Poisoned Food [11 Thory 4385; Eigrach, Srineia]
Este:"I'm not coming unless Sythyry is there, and with plentiful cley for healing spells, too!"
Phaniet:"Well, there's the lizard now. Invite zir yourself."
Este:"Me? Don't be ridiculous. Zie actually listens to you."
Me:"I'll listen to either of you ... are you planning an adventure?"
Phaniet:"Yes -- a culinary adventure. Bwipin invited me and a few friends."
Este:"Gutrumy House -- the Restaurant of Death!"
Here's what one guidebook has to say about Gutrumy House.
Gutrumy House is the brainchild of a mushroom-loving Rassimel chef and his husband, the former head of the Healer's Guild. It is based on three basic principles:
- Mushrooms are delicious;
- Some mushrooms are poisonous;
- This should not prevent people from enjoying them
Accordingly, this small and exclusive restaurant serves an unusually broad variety of comestables, including many that are generally not regarded as generally comestable. The entire staff (all Rassimel) is trained in the use of healing and detoxification spells. No more diners are allowed than the restaurant has cley and staff available to heal them. The food is quite good, though it tends to feature ingredients and presentation more than the delicate harmonies or intense flavors of more conventional Srineian eateries. Despite the reputation, the menu is largely non-toxic. Prices of poisonous dishes are quite high, as they include the cley to heal you as well as the rare ingredients to feed you. Prices of non-poisonous dishes are also high compared to other Eigrach restaurants. The menu changes by season and availability of ingredients, though grilled and sautéed mushrooms are always the centerpiece and always a very unusual treat -- and the frisson of danger is an extra bit of spice.
Este:"I cannot believe that you want to go there."
Phaniet:"It sounds interesting and delicious!"
Phaniet:"Foods I would never get to taste ordinarily!"
Windigar:"I'm in, if the invitation is open enough."
Este:"Are you trying to make time with my wife, nominally cissy boy?"
Windigar:"I am trying to protect her honor from Lord Bwipin's inevitable drunken advances! You could do it yourself if you wanted." Everyone smirked.
Me:"I'll go. Not that I am particularly eager to sample deadly fungi, but Phaniet knows too many of my secrets. Bwipin is sure to ply her with some mysterious Srineian mind-control mushroom and rip them from her psyche. Just like he forgot to do the last four times they got together." Actual reason: I had been meaning to try it out. It sounds interesting, in a way that is, honestly, less doom than my usual life.
Phaniet:"I can take care of myself." Which is approximately true.
Kantele:"I'll go. I'm not much longer for this life anyhow. I might as well die over a plate of fine mushrooms as anything." (No, she's not that old.)
Este:"Fine, I'll come, I'll come. Sythyry, Phaniet, what kind of healing precautions do you guys have?"
Me:"Reasonably good ones grafted. I don't know exactly what's in the cabinet."
Phaniet:"In the cabinet are: four talismans conferring immunity to the four most common kinds of poison, two unlimited-healing devices, a broad-spectrum antitoxin that Sythyry made for the Daukrhame city guard not long before some international incident made the sale impossible and zie never got around to selling since then, and sundry lesser devices."
Me:"Oh, that cursed, cursed talisman." I had tried to sell it to two other cities, too, but it's a fairly expensive device (following normal enchanter prices) and I didn't want to get into the habit of selling things too cheaply, so I still have it.
Este:"What curse did you put on it, and should I rely on that curse to save my life?"
Me:"Not a technically cursy curse. I just should have sold it fifty years ago."
Phaniet:"But technically we don't bring our own healing, they supply it. Though I wouldn't mind having some extra, as backup."