As she watched the sun set on another day, Zolis perched herself on the short fence across the road from the local Neverwinter watering hole. She reached into her cloak and felt her dagger tucked safely in her belt and her lucky deck of cards hidden in a concealed pocket.
She watched poor sods pour into the tavern, desperate for something strong to drink. She reached into a pocket and pulled out a small pie she had swiped from a cart at closing time. She devoured it in one bite as she waited for the men inside to wander in and drink a little past their limits. Soon, the warm glow inside the tavern became the only light in the vicinity. Night had fallen.
She wandered into the tavern and ordered an ale from the barkeep. As he prepared her drink she scanned the room. It didn’t take long for her to notice a drunken dwarf who had had far too much. His boisterous laugh drowned out many of the tavern dwellers and ensured no one had noticed her slip into the corner.————————————————————————-
“Just like that, up your sleeve,” explained Uncle Abraz.
Zolis had been struggling with this same trick for a year. She had moved in with her uncle since her father had passed. Life with her uncle was different from when she lived with her father and her brother. She certainly felt a little less lonely.
“It’s important you know how to handle any deck of cards,” he said with a knowing wink and he took another swig from the stein sitting next to him.
She didn’t mind the drinking. Growing up she spent a lot of time at home alone, with her father constantly heading out on work trips. And as she got older, her brother started to disappear more and more as well. Her Uncle, on the other hand, never got too far. He was happy as long as the liquor cabinet wasn’t empty.————————————————————————
“Fancy a little game of chance?” purred Zolis to the young man in a booth around the corner of the bar.
“I’ll need to know my opponent,” crooned the drunken man, barely supporting his head on his arms.
“The name is Vurra, Vurra Nemira.”
She had been spending more and more time in Phandelin since her uncle died. They had both always joked that he would drink himself to death one day. One day he did. All it took was one drink too many for one of his games to go awry. It ended in an alley. There were too many of them, he didn’t even stand a chance.
Her uncle had alway warned her to cover her bases. Not everyone, needed to know her name. She walked out of the Phandalin tavern pocketing the goal she had just won. Barely, she didn’t even need to play them. He passed out as he tried to lean in to kiss her. She swiped the coin purse dangling from his belt and slipped out.
She had gotten far too good at this. She spent her days practising her Sleight of Hand and she worked at night. She was only sixteen but she felt independent thanks to her uncle. He had equipped her with the skills she needed to make enough of a living for just herself.
“Hey! Get back over here!”
She heard footsteps leaving the tavern.
“I wasn’t — I know you took em!”————————————————————————-
As she turned her attention to the dwarf she noticed him getting drunker and drunker. She made her way over to him.