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Monday, December 11, 2023

Review: The Night Tymora Sneezed by Ed Greenwood

"The Night Tymora Sneezed" is the fourth Spin a Yarn written by the creator of the Forgotten Realms. While the last was longer than the previous, this one is even longer and divided into six parts. This page links to each one. As always, this is bizarre story collated by suggestions from the audience at a panel of Gen Con, this time in 2004. It was published in July 2005.

The story begins with a chatelaine schooling a young noble student of eight winters. They are in Castle Waterdeep, home of Piergeiron, the current Open Lord of the city. The stripling is obstinate, and the chatelaine patient. Two workers witness the chagrin of the governess. These two are workers going over ledgers of magical items. The elder is Oruld and the younger Reld. This is a fun listing of things you could bring into your own game and includes a cheeky game book reference to LNG

The next setup involves two veteran guards going over the guest list for a gnome-halfling wedding. They banter about the new officers put over them and the slaughtering they may have to inflict on the roguish outlanders that are coming to the wedding. The event is at the tavern called the Bloody Fist. It is located at the meeting of Snail and Presper Streets in Dock Ward, and is the designated place to enter into wedlock for Talaressa Wondergleam of the Dock Ward and Lucklai Minstrelwish of Secomber. Belgrim "the Bold" Huldersord is the proprietor, once a sellsword but now the stubborn eyepatch wearing owner (though blind in neither eye) that would rather have constant repairs down than replacing the building. It is also known for its serious drinking, dancing girls, and gnomish brothel down stairs. Flesh-eating fairies wait the tables. 

Something is awry and Belgrim needs to call in a favor from Mirt the Moneylender. It becomes more intriuging and absurd when the Barrera Alhound, Just Blade of Tempus, comes in with a magical sword and gigantic codpiece (though Barrera is a woman) to prevent penguins from stealing Talaressa's chastity belt.

This is essentially the setup of part one. I think I appreciate it more than the first three. While completely absurd it feels like a good controlled hodgepodge rather than complete madness. It also has new and interesting characters rather than the same old ones that I like but have read about a hundred times. Part two introduces our sneezing goddess, Tymora, Elminster, Volo, and much, much more. 

While very fun, it is longer than a short story. It may be a novella, I'm not sure on the word count. Either way, it gets even wilder and it has a satisfying conclusion that involves the bending of norms and actual genders. Ha! Greenwood juggles well many fantastic things but sometimes you wonder if he needs to get so flamboyant. If you can enjoy the longer ride, it is rather Exceptional


You can track my current progress here.

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