Peering across the room, Cerys noticed that the shelf seemed to hold a lot of similar books. She crossed the room and scanned the shelf more closely. “James, you are a curious specimen of a teenager,” she told him. Then to Himeko, who gave her a curious look. “He owns every book from every edition of Dungeons and Dragons. First edition, second… all the way to fourth. Even the campaign setting boxed sets.”
Himeko’s eyes widened. “That is quite impressive…” She turned to James and added, “But is it necessary to have so much?”
He shrugged. “I might as well have not had them for a couple years there… I haven’t had anyone to game with in ages.” Climbing over his bed to get to a wide oak desk, he booted up a computer. “Which edition do you want me to print character sheets from?”
Cerys and the others talked it over for a few minutes before finally settling on third edition. The printer was soon spitting out black-and-white sheets while James searched his stacks of boxes for his dice. Long after the ink was dry, he pulled two velvet bags up from the bottom a worn-out looking box and grinned.
“Wow, two bag,” Peter teased. “Is this how gamers make up for something?”
“It’s not compensation,” James replied with a chuckle. Her grabbed the papers off of his printer and headed towards the door. “The thing is, a friend of mine game me some of his stuff a few years back. It’s how I ended up with multiples of so many things.”
“Oh,” Cerys said. “That’s a good explanation.”
“Yeah,” he agreed. “Come with me. There’s a table in the next room… and way fewer boxes.”
Bayani pulled the player handbooks from the bookshelf and followed everyone else from that room to the next. It had dimmer lighting, and was not cluttered at all. It looked like it had been set up as a study or small library, with a few bookshelves and the long table in the middle of it all. It was big enough for six chairs, and they were soon all settled around it with their character sheets. James located a pencil box, then started handing out dice.
“Who is going to DM?” Peter asked before he wrote so much as his name on his sheet.
Cerys looked to James hopefully.
“I’d like to, unless anyone objects. I have a great story in mind that I think you’ll all really enjoy.”
Nobody objected. James explained how he wanted them to complete their character sheets; house rules trumped a few things in the book, but most of it was true to tradition. Himeko was a dwarf (as she always was, she explained), Bayani and Peter both elves, and Cerys a human, despite begging to be a kender for several minutes.
“Chaotic and neutral evil are out,” James told them when they came to alignment, “and you’d have to be pretty convincing to be lawful evil. Do you have your classes in mind?”
“Paladin,” Himeko said first.
“Bard,” Bayani added with a playful smile. “You won’t be sorry, I promise.”
“Archer,” Peter said when James looked to him.
“That goes under fighter,” James explained. Then to Cerys, “Are you going to round out the party with a mage or a monk?”