In Which Vae Is A Monster, Redux, part 1 [27 Hivvem 4261]
After Vae had finished squirming around from the unendurable ecstasy induced by getting a childrens' book about some rabbits stealing radishes from some Herethroy farmers, she said, "Come with me, Sythyry! The I want to show off my new treasures!"
I was quite surprised. She doesn't usually ask permission before teleporting me off to Bfelmykh or some other stinking nonprime hole. This new phenomenon was to be encouraged at all costs -- even the cost of seeing her new treasures.
Besides, I passed "Appreciation of Chairs". What possible horrors could seeing her new treasure hold?
"I'd be glad to! And thanks for asking, Vae. You're getting better at that."
She crouched embarrassedly. "Well, it's a good thing for me this is, to make a bragging. Easier by far to keep my tail to myself than when it's some good thing for you. Or a thing that could seem good."
"Your new treasures are so wicked, then, as to be dangerous to me?"
She giggled. "The mighty warrior Zi Ri should cast all zir defensive spells, for soon we shall see..." She flicked me with her tailtip.
Her treasure room is impressive simply as a room.
- It is about a quarter of a mile long. I don't know many rooms that size.
- It is about a quarter of an inch high. I don't know many rooms that size, either. That's plenty of space for a nendrai of Vae's sensibilities, though. It was the sort of quarter-inch that a ten-foot-tall armoire can fit comfortably in. Usually when Vae does this sort of space-distortion thing, she's very noisy about it. This time, both teleporting us there and the spell that let us be in a far-too-small room were very, very quiet.
- The walls and floor and ceiling of the room are all world-amber -- which is to say, the hardened sap of the world tree. World-amber is reasonably tough. Actually world-amber is unreasonably tough. Soft world amber is stronger than unenchanted metal. It's also reasonably, or unreasonably, expensive. An ounce of world-amber is probably worth tens or hundreds of times as much as a similar amount of metal. There were thousands of tons of it here.
Me:"Where are we, Vae?"
Vae:"Not happily would I tell you that, not even you, Sythyry."
Me:"I mean, what sort of a place is it? Not, how do I teleport here and steal your treasures?"
Vae:"Oh! The branch has a little fissure deep inside the wood, that spilled sap so many years ago, and the sap hardened. And it's that fissure that I found, and used for this place. The one of those fissures, rather, for hundreds and hundreds there are."
Me:"So we're deep underwood"
Which is to say, her hoard is protected by a great deal of the strongest wood in our universe, as well as the strongest amber in our universe, as well as whatever spells she had put on it, as well as by obscurity. (I won't describe what the Eye of Mirizan and Melizan says about them -- Vae later asked m enot to -- except to say that she worked for a long time on them and I really wouldn't recommend that you try to get in without bringing a happy and cooperative Vae with you, unless you think you could dispose of about two and a half unhappy and uncooperative Vaes.)
Me:"Well, all this world-amber is excellent treasure. Want me to sell any in Vheshrame?"
Vae:"Oh, the wanting is on me for you to sell it. Not the ability though, for it's too tough for me to break off with spells or strengths. I tried for hours last week."
Me:"A pity. I could embezzle a great deal from selling even a little of it." Which is certainly true, if it's of such high quality that a nendrai can't mine it.
Vae:"The excellent room-armor it makes, though!"
Me:"That it does, truly. Do you need a treasure beyond the room?"
Vae:"Not a bit! The other treasure is superfluous fluff, yet it pleases me. Here's the first of it I will show you, come to me just last week."
She opened a drawer and showed me six little ointment jars. They were small, and made of blue pottery, and had moderate Healoc Corpador enchantments on them.
Me:"What do they do?"
Vae chirped, "This!" She ripped her left foreleg open from ankle to knee with a claw, barely wincing about it.