POINTS OF VIEW
(Kolli the Portly, head of the Jewellers' Guild)
"Griselda? A very dangerous person, by all that I hear; I cannot
understand why she is allowed to remain at large. Why, if you believe the
stories, she is behind half the crime in this city, or knows who is.
Weren't her relatives implicated in that big warehouse robbery? Yes, I
know that nothing was proved against them, but they had to leave the city,
didn't they? Surely that means the Watch knew something but couldn't prove
it. These days the Watch's hands are tied: Fleeter Nemm is too concerned
with "justice", and not enough with the security of Pavis's citizens. No,
she has done no harm to me or anyone I know."
(Hareva Hardblow, initiate of Humakt)
"Griselda? Fine sword-fighter, really fine. Mind, I think she could manage
with a bigger blade than that puny little sticker, but I suppose she's
used to it. That duel of hers with Red Hot, now, that was something to
watch, and she showed some good moves against Carver Donan also. I'd turn
out to see her fight any time, watch all day.
What do I think of her otherwise? We-ell -- it's a pity she's not
interested in the cult."
(unnamed Mostali encountered in the entrance hall of Dwarfside)
"Griselda? We have heard this name for many work-periods, but we have no
interest in individuals, and certainly not in this one. None of her
reported activities tends towards harmony with the World Machine, rather
the opposite. I do not wish to discuss this further."
(Avidius Tiro; see the story "Serious Money" in The Collected
Griselda or Tales of the Reaching Moon #3 for this character)
"Griselda? A thief and a cheat, nothing more. Oh, she has a certain
attractiveness and a degree of intelligence, I grant you, but she is only
remarkable by comparison with the deadbeats who infest the same haunts
that she does. Her exploits are vastly overrated, and I cannot understand
why she attracts so much interest in Pavis. Yes, I admit that her
superficial charm took me in for a while; but I am up to all her tricks
"You want to know what I think of Griselda? I wisht I had a silver for
every idiot that has asked me that, I do in-deed. You really think, just
because they call me Loud, I'm gonna go round talking about my customers?
How'm I gonna keep them, they hear I do that?
But I'll tell you this: I bless the day she first walked in here, for all
the mess she left behind her. She's real good for business. Everybody
that hears about her and wants to see her knows to come here. I've heard
tell, they surely are sore at Gimpy's, that the guys she was after that
time weren't in there. Heh heh heh; serves 'em right, I say, for being too
choosy about their customers.
Now if you aren't gonna buy a drink, maybe you'd care to step aside for
someone who will."
(Rowdy Djoh Lo)
"Griselda? M'm; how can I put this? Around here, friend, they take a poor
view of anyone goin' around askin' questions. I'd say the people at this
table right here would take an especially poor view of questions about
Griselda, bein' as she's a friend of theirs. But maybe if you was to buy
them all a drink, they might be willin' to accept that you were just a
poor dumb fool who'd made a mistake, wandered in where he shouldn't have.
That's right. Oh, I'm sure you don't mean any harm -- but people can do
harm without meanin' to, now isn't that so?
Yes, the drink here is kinda strong, but we like it that way; we like
most things that way, and that's why we like Griselda, and we don't like
people askin' questions about her. Mind your head on your way out."
(unnamed troll of Javis clan, speaking heavily accented Tradetalk; this
item is offered with a respectful bow in the direction of Walter Mosley
and the culture that his stories represent)
"What you wan' wid me, thinskin? Does I know Griselda? No, I doesn' know
Griselda. Wait, I 'specks you means Copperhead -- thass what all we uz
callin' her, Copperhead. Yeah, I knows her, all right. When she first come
to Pavis, boss Gan, he callin' us all together, says, `Now lissen here,
you no-'count uz. They's a new thinskin female in Pavis you gotta watch
out fo'. She got hair colour'a copper, 'n' stan's 'bout as high, my waist,
but don' let that fool you: she smart, an' she tough, an' mos' of all, she
a friend'a Pikat Yaraboom!' You can b'lieve, we makin' some noise then, to
hear that mighty name. `Yeah, so,' boss Gan says, `I gettin' the word from
him, and I passin' it on to you: long's she leaves you alone, you leaves
her alone, or I'ma kill yo' ass!' An ain't none of us had a reason to do
otherwise. Copperhead, she all right fo' a thinskin, she been puttin'
stuff our way, an' we sure feelin' grateful. Anybody doin' sumpin' t'her,
we be after 'm good an' strong, you hear me?"
(Jorjar the Quick, Constable of Pavis)
"Griselda? That woman gives me more headaches than any other hardcase
around here, bar none. It's not so much what she does: I can't get any
hard evidence that she's been involved in any bigtime crime so far, and
I'm not bothered about the occasional killing -- the way I hear it, she
never kills anyone that the city wouldn't be better without. No, what
bothers me is what she may be planning to do. She has more brains than all
of her friends put together; so what in the name of all the gods is she
doing out here? You'd think, she'd have much more scope for her talents in
civilisation. She has to have some angle, but my trollkin can't find out a
thing, for all the drinks that they buy her and that I have to pay for out
of what little the city allows me for expenses. I hope she's not
political; I figure it would have shown some way by now, but there it is
-- she is very, very good at covering her tracks. Well, I'm working on
(Vapidus Erronius, junior Lunar administrator)
"Do I know Griselda? My dear sir, if I were to tell you all that I knew of
Griselda, you would be astonished, you would indeed. For instance, I have
good authority for believing that she is in fact Pentan by birth, one of
the redheads taken in tribute, and that she is a secret agent of our
glorious Empire. Her so-called relatives? Easily explained, my dear sir:
actors, hired to provide protective colouring. In reality, she may well be
a sister or cousin of one of the famous Lunar Coders, Eslas; they have
much in common, as anyone can plainly see.
No, I believe that she is investigating the cults, not the Governor, and
is reporting to him. I cannot confirm the rumours of a more intimate
relationship, but they are plausible -- consider the way that she and her
associates were protected in that business of the charts, which of course
was designed to discredit the cults in the eyes of the citizens of Pavis.
Obviously, my dear sir, she is giving the impression of being a lowlife,
and she has skills enough to make this seem plausible; no doubt this is
allowing her to acquire useful information about the criminal element in
Pavis, and provides opportunities to recruit persons who can be of use to
Her killings? Attempts to nip conspiracies in the bud, I would say;
conspiracies can develop in strange places.
Her trip to the Devil's Playground? This certainly turned up information
of value to the Empire, as well as allowing her to establish herself as
trustworthy in the eyes of the Pavis cult; she is highly skilled at making
any action serve more than one purpose, but all is for the good of the
Empire in the end.
Really, my dear sir, you are as difficult to convince as my colleagues;
but one of these days you will see that I am right. Her hair colour alone
must surely indicate that she is with us."
(Dangmar Orlgardsson, Sartarite patriot)
"Griselda? Oh, she's a deep one. With hair that colour, she's gotta be a
Vingan, right? But anything she does for the Cause, it's real secret.
Sure, she comes on like a tough and hangs about with crooks; the Lunars
are gonna give her less hassle if they think she's just a hardcase than if
she's known to favour the Cause. Maybe she's aiming to recruit among the
crooks, too; there's tough fighters among them, who it would be good to
have on our side. My guess is, she's gathering information, too. Some say
that Wolfhead knows where Balastor's Axe is stashed, which could be a real
handy thing to find, get Pavis on our side. You just wait and see: she'll
be there when Orlanth and Sartar call."
(Marius Sylvilagos, sergeant in the Marble Phalanx)
"I swear, you can hear more stories about Griselda at headquarters than
there are fleas in a nomads' camp, but you can't believe any of them.
She's just one of the adventurers they have around here, better at it than
most. I like having her about, myself; somehow interesting things always
seem to be happening to her, or around her, and that Olaf the Story-teller
makes them into good stories. When you've been in this dump as long as I
have, you welcome anything to break the monotony."
(Lucia Patroma, younger sister of Viridia Patroma; see the story
"Bad Example" in The Collected Griselda)
"What do I think of Griselda? It's lucky you didn't ask my sister Viridia;
depending on who's present, she either practically spits blood or dies on
the spot when Griselda's name is mentioned. It's the best way we know of
getting a rise out of her or shutting her up -- hasn't failed yet. In
fact, we have a little competition going in the family, to see who can
bring up Griselda's name in the most unlikely conversation. One has to do
something to pass the time. We have some money riding on it, but we keep
putting off the closing date because it's so much fun. And you know
something? It's my impression that Father has taken to bringing up
Griselda's name too, when Viridia is being particularly obnoxious. Yes,
Griselda has been very useful to our family."
(Kleftissa, the youngest, and best, of Duke Raus's Bows, a group
centring on 3 female crossbow-users who are among his most valued
mercenaries; Duke Raus controls one of the Grantlands, along the
river south of Pavis).
"Griselda? Well, I'll tell you. I sure hope the Duke never has cause to
send us after her; I doubt even Hildie could dope out a sure-fire plan to
take her. I really don't want to mess with her, ever. She's too small to
make a good target, unless she was real close, and I don't like to shoot
from too close: you don't nail them precisely, and before you know it
they're all over you. Which could happen all too easily with Griselda,
she's so fast. Lucky? You said it, and real smart too. Look at all the
fighting she's done, and the places she goes, like in the Rubble, and not
a mark to show for it.
I wish she'd join up with the Duke, for a fact; she's smart enough to run
this whole outfit, and I like the sound of her. But if he ever thought of
hiring her, either he changed his mind or she wasn't interested. Too bad."
(Grobar the Gormless, on his first visit to Pavis)
"Griselda? Who's Griselda? Small, very pretty, red hair, blue eyes? Sounds
great; how do I get to meet her?"