This my first fan fic, so please be nice to me about it. It is based loosely on the character I play in Dungeons and Dragons. This is an idea I have had for a while, although at this point, I don't quite know where it is going. The end is still not clear to me, but as with all my writing, it will come to me.

Disclaimer; I do not own D&D. I only own the characters in this story.

A Bard's Tale

Chapter one. The storm

Blazewind ducked quickly into the run down old tavern, and let the rickety old door close with a squeak behind her. She looked around the shabby, dimly let place at the wooden tables scattered around the room, most of them all occupied by people of differant races, and at the bar along the back, with a tall man behind it. She took an empty table near the bar and set her things on the floor, using her hands to force the rainwater from her red hair. Her two long braids were flat from the rain, and her bright colored clothes were soaked. She took off her green cloak and hung it over a chair, hoping that it might at least begin to dry, before she put it on again.

"I see you were caught in the rain mylady," said the bartender, looking up from the bar. Blazewind nooded.

"I suppose you will be needing a drink," the bartender said next.

"Yes, I would like a drink. Perhaps some domestic beer."

The man walked away, and soon returned with her glass, which he placed on the table. "Colorful clothing you have there," he commented. "You are a traveling bard?" Blazewind nodded, and the man went on. "Perhapes you would care to entertain my wet patrons until they dare to venture back out into this weather. I would bet that you could earn a good bit from this crowd for your trouble."

"I will be happy to sing a few ballads, and play a few songs," Blazewind said, as she sipped her drink. She was greatly surprised that this man was asking her to play in his tavern. She could recall so many times of having to practacally beg for the right to earn her living in so many of these little towns and villages. "I don't think I am going very far tonight. Is there an inn in the village that might have a room for me for the night. A place to sleep and wait out the storm?" Thunder banged in the distance, and Blazewind jumped to her feet with fright.

In the corner, two small halfling men, who were both under four feet tall, and both louding acting out a story they were telling to their very small female table mate, laughed at the young performer's nerves.

"You think yourself to be roadworthy and yet you can't even handle a little thunder" one said, putting his drink down with a loud bang. His companions laughed.

"She might be fine on the road," said the other tiny little man, "that is untill the rain begins."

Blazewind felt that she could easily give both of the men a piece of her mind. She reached for the sowrd that she wore at her waist, and thought of shaking them up a little. The nerve of such little people to laugh at an angry traveler. She changed her mind about doing something like that and instead thought of a song to sing for the people. She knew in her heart that she was a performer, not a fighter. Besides, those men were so tiny.

"I was not afraid," said blurted out to the men, as she finished her drink. "It just caught me by surprise." She would not give them the satisfaction of knowing that she had been jumpy in thounder storms since she was a little girl.

"About that inn, my good man," she said looking back to the bartender. He gave her the directions to a small local inn, and refilled her glass. She nodded her thanks as he clapped his hands together, trying to get the attention of the crowd.

"If you would give this pretty young lady bard some of your attention, she has agreed to sing, and play for us all tonight." The crowd of mostly drunk man, and a few woman, half of them in fighters armor, clapped their hands, and cheered noisilly.

Blazewind took her wooden panflute from her bag, and began to play. The two noisy halflings had finally stopped their disruptive behaviour, and no one else made much sound either. She played untill half the crowd was gone, and the rest looked ready to depart from the place.

"I must go to the inn to sleep right away, and be back out on the open road tomorrow," she said, "but I will sing one last song before I do. This was written for me six years ago by a man who knew I would sing it the way he told me that he heard it in his head. He was the one who taught me the ways of the road, and most everything else I know. The name of the song is 'The Ballad of Freedom.'" The crowd sat, staring at her in great attention as she sang fer final song of the night, and at the end, even the disruptive halflings clapped their tiny hands together as they got up to leave.

Blazewind could still hear the rain pouring down from the heavens in huge droplets, as she sat up in her bed, unable to sleep. The thunder was worse now than ever, and she shook her head in disbelief at herself, for still feeling so afraid of it. It was after all only the weather, and could not hurt her. But still, she was afraid. The day shew had seen both of her parents bodies, laying dead in the doorway to their old home, it had been in the middle of a thunderstorm. No wonder she was afraid of it, with a memory like that still freash in her mind after nearly twelve years. She played her panflute for awhile, thinking that there was never any harm in more practice. She began to play the ballad of freedom and as she did, she began to think back to the man who had written it for her.

"No one in the whole land will ever play, or sing this as well as you," Jamis StormyBrooke had said years ago, as he taught her the melody. She could now recall his bright, playfull smile, which reached nearly to his pointed ears. She recalled with a start that it had indeed been five years since she had last seen him alive, and as she went back to her song, she once again swore to agenge his death.