Most fantasy adventures have a way of starting off in taverns and it is an obvious place to start; they are full of interesting people, both of the good and evil variety, and are places where information is freely distributed, so allowing the reader to catch up on current events happening in the world of the author's creation.

Most likely, it is because everyone is so much more likable when they're drunk.

This certain story starts outside a pub. In the darkening evening a man could be seen leaning against a tree. He'd come outside for the fresh air, and to escape the testosterone and alcohol fueled Knights inside.

It was growing dark. To the East the final pinkness was draining from the horizon. A cool breeze blew through the tiny town, rustling the leaves in the gutter and on the trees. A wolf howled somewhere out on the plains.

The figure pushed himself away from the tree and stood. For a while he stared out to the North: they would be heading that way in the morning. He imagined himself standing in the great golden halls at the summit, choosing his destiny. It would be the most glorious moment of his life.

But, right now, he needed his sleep. The loud noises, drunken song, and occasional crash as someone fell off a table had died down and he moved back into the golden, beckoning warmth of the tavern.

They'd ordered three rooms to accommodate the 12 men in their group, paying for it freely, as they always did, on the Kingdom treasury. It seemed now that most of the men would not be needing them and would be spending their time comatose on the vomit-splattered floor with blood running from their ears. Our protagonist made his way gingerly across the sea of bodies and spilled beer and crumpled, splintered tables to the stairs.

"Ere? Who's gonna pay for all this then?"

The man paused with his hand on the banister. He glanced to the counter, from where the voice had come.

"Ere?" the voice repeated. "Who's paying for this, eh?"

"You will receive payment in a week," the man on the stairs told him. His voice was cool and calm.

"A week?" squeaked the voice. "What about 'till then? I'll be out of business by then!"

The man on the stairs sighed. "Sir, do you love you're kingdom?"

The voice behind the counter faltered. When you're in a room filled with a dozen men all loyal to the Kingdom you tend to think about your answer to a question like that, even if they do all seem to be unconscious.

"... with all my heart," the voice choked, knowing what was coming next.

"Then you will be willing to suffer this inconvenience a few days for your country. We will be gone by morning."

Stifling a yawn, he carried on up the stairs. There was a brief cry that the man would sue them all to hell, then a pause as it dawned on him that this was one of the few worlds yet to develop much of a legal system.