Epilogue

"And that's how we heroically defeated the Wyverns with many magical spells," Jarlaxle told the townsfolk, gesturing at the two, slightly mangled, heads. "And destroyed their nest," he added as an afterthought. Most of the tavern broke out into cheers. Several of the more matronly women were dewy eyed, news of Entreri's ruse to get them into town having spread. One stout blonde had actually hugged Jarlaxle and called him a brave little thing. Then she had let him go so she could go bake him a pie.

Behind Jarlaxle's crowd of onlookers, Entreri and Zeena sat on benches, drinking cider and wincing whenever Jarlaxle spoke too loudly. Gabby was sitting in the corner to keep an eye on Zeena. She had her lecturing face on, but luckily had decided the sermon could wait for when she and Zeena were alone.

"So, your friend going to be healed soon?" Entreri asked Zeena, feeling awkwardly out of place in a group of people who kept reaching out to give him a pat on the back (every time he was convinced that they were trying to stab him).

"Maybe," Zeena muttered, shrugging. She cast a discrete look through lowered lashes to see if Gabby was listening. Satisfied that she was safe, Zeena continued. "She's still a bit whiny, but I'm going to carry her out of here if I have to. I've crocheted, embroidered and quilted enough to equip the entire damn inn. If I have to take up knitting I think I'll just go insane." She stared gloomily at her untouched piece of pie. It looked so good, but her stomach was warning her that the pastry would be a very bad idea. Jarlaxle and Entreri had already finished theirs and gone back for seconds.

"We're leaving tomorrow, I think," Artemis said, a trifle apologetically. "But really nice work with the quilting," he added, spurred to an uncharacteristic complement by the desperate boredom in her eyes. "I like the dragon quilt," he told her.

"Do you want it?" Zeena asked him, a little flattered, "I hung them up so I could see them. They don't belong to the inn. The innkeeper didn't really like them anyway," she added.

"Sure. Jarlaxle really liked it too," he confided to her (he was, possibly, a tiny bit drunk still). "And I haven't found something to give him for midwinter yet," he added, remembering. Jarlaxle had been so delighted by the idea of a holiday for giving gifts; Artemis usually tried to get him something interesting. Jarlaxle always gave Entreri a dozen gifts or more, so Artemis felt like he should make an effort.

"Then I'll take it down and give it to you tonight," Zeena decided. She squinted at Entreri, blocking out the majority of the evil light. "Think we'll see each other again?" she asked pensively. The last day had been the most fun she'd had since Gabby broke her leg.

"Yeah, maybe," Entreri responded, knowing that they probably wouldn't. He spied Jarlaxle making his exit, heading towards their table. "I think we're going to bed soon," he told her regretfully. It had been nice, meeting another adventurer who didn't aspire to sainthood. "Early morning, you know?"

"I'll leave the quilt by your door. Just be sure to get up before him," she nodded at Jarlaxle.

"Thanks." Entreri rose and walked up the stairs, listening to an eagerly chattering Jarlaxle.

And just like that, the adventure was over.

The End.

Until I get drunk again and begin a sequel in another moment of inebriated inspiration. W00T.

Incidentally, did anyone notice that this was a crossover with Xena? Zeena=Xena. I thought it was pretty obvious, but no one said anything.