i do love the idea of a Halfling army, and i’m sorely tempted to start one.
The topic inspired a short story…
He studied the ‘Wanted’ poster critically. The artist had captured his likeness nicely:- His flowing, windswept mane of hair, piercing blue eyes, strong cheekbones, square jaw. His body, well-muscled, chest: criss-crossed with old scars, above his fur trimmed, leather loincloth and sturdy calf high boots. His halbard was seen jutting over his right shoulder, and his right arm was thrust skyward in an heroic pose, sword flashing in the sunlight. The artist had even captured the bejewelled hilt and Elven runes on the glistening blade to perfection.
Hrin grunted with satisfaction.
It had cost him a small fortune to have the posters drawn up, and distributed throughout the land. Still, a mercenary needed a good reputation.
Squinting, he read the words slowly, out loud.
“Wanted … Dead or Alive…Hrin Hamstringr, Mastr Theef, Swashbucklr, Rogue, Womanizr, Murderr, Cut-throat. Reward: 50 gold pieces”.
At the time, the artist had raised an eyebrow questioningly at the word: ‘Cutthroat’, but Hrin’s crusty sidekick, Vrick, had explained how most of Hrin’s foes died.
“First, dey getz hamstrung, ya see, wiv da sword of 'is,” Vrick explained with a leer, “Den 'e slitz dem from ear ta ear!” The deed was acted out with a grimy finger across his throat and a gurgling gasp of dying breath.
The artist paled, nodded, and included it.
Only now did Hrin spot something in the background of the picture, vague, but visible nonetheless.
He cursed loudly.
Unbenownst to Hrin, probably after Hrin had left the studio, the artist had sketched in a bar stool behind Hrin, to give scale to the picture.
The stool’s seat was level with Hrin’s shoulder.
As he peered even closer. Hrin spotted a big fat mouse, underneath the stool, just to bludgeon the point.
“I’ll gut that sneaky watery-eyed bastard!” growled Hrin, but it was too late now. The posters were even now being distributed far and wide, and the artist had probably caught the first ship leaving the docks.
Vrick giggled wheezily. “Hrin the Pint-sized Barbarian!” he chuckled expansively, knowing just how to goad his companion.
Hrin gave him a hard flinty look, and Vrick’s laughter died away. Vrick knew when to poke fun, and when to shut up. He’d seen that look often enough, usually just before blood was spilled.
His companion was tetchy at the best of times, meaner than a rabid sewer rat, and the halfling could be pricklier than a hedgehog if he thought anyone was disrespecting him. ’