After checking up the pile of papers, ads and supermarket magazines, I found a leather suitcase below my inbox.
To Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden.Says the piece of paper taped to one side.
I took the chance to open my Mage Sight and the suitcase looks like a huge scroll of parchment. Curiouser and curiouser.
To take that into my home means it bypasses the meager protections my bachelor's home gives. Can take the suitcase and open it outside and the bad mojo won't spill all over my place.
Run a hand over my hair, On the flipside, I can trace a circle of protection and use my talismans on it.
Took the not-dangerous-at-all-suitcase and lit the fireplace. Lighted up a candle and with a cold beer proceeded to open the straps.
Inside there were pictures, old ones. The ones that used silver nitrate and the photographer used a cloth over their heads. A picture of a leather duster with many tools stapped on the inside. Squinted a bit and Are those runes? Flipped the picture and the back said:
"I owe so many lives to this. Rule #1 Don't die. Bad for business."
Preach! Gave a tip of my imaginary hat to that one.
Another picture, yellowed out due to age, had a leather jacket which was open on the side, showing some metal plates underneath. Checked the back:
"Always carry mundane armour. Rule #2. Since the dawn of time, more magic users died from a blade to the gut than fireballs."
That one filled me with dread. Skimmed over other pictures, all with notes. Coins, paintings, shoes, like someone took pictures from an entire pawn shop.
The most endearing so far was a smiling old lady, knitting while a kitten played with the ball of yarn.
"That sweet grandma did in the previous Blackstaff. Rule 27# There is a line between being a gentleman and a dead fool."
That got me blinking slowly. Turned again. The grandma's face was wrinkled, but her hands were smooth. Her teeth weren't missing, black paint!
After leafing through endless pictures, found a bound tome.
It wasn't pretty, clear witness of violent history. The cover was burnt in some places, the leather cut in jigsawed pattern. There were dark stains on the ream.
Here goes nuthing!
And the very first line had me dropping my beer and coughing a lung.
Blinking and trying to get the beer out, the one that took the wrong turn and went on the other pipe.
Looked again and the line said the same.
My hands shook like I was holding a live wire.
"Grandson, if you are reading this..."