The Coinkind (Part Two)
By Ed Greenwood
Elminster found the truth about the Coinkind to be rather delightful. It appealed to both his sense of kindness and his whimsy, and he has no intention of revealing it to anyone.
He has even aided the coin-giver by bestowing on her, from his own caches of magic, a ring of invisibility, a ring of telekinesis, and a ghost rod). Elminster left them on the giver's pillow after appearing in her dreams as two silver eyes, and telling her their powers and to wear them at all times when making her gifts. She's now doing so, believing them to have come from the goddess Sêlune.
The "Coinkind" is no league of rich thief-hiring widows at all, but a lone woman of some thirty winters, Jaranthra Wynkle (CG female human Wiz2). Lonely, very well educated and eloquent, and rather plain in both personal looks and preferred clothing and cuisine, she's the only daughter of Randurass Wynkle.
Randurass made a vast fortune making and selling various sealants for kegs, ship planking, and canvas (such as "urlog" and "mend-ever," and the glue that fixes crumbling mend-ever, "wrathstop"). Most of these "secret formula" substances have since fallen out of favor, as they're expensive and last only a season at best. Randurass drowned in a shipwreck off Baldur's Gate in 1369 DR, while on a business trip (his body was recovered and identified). His death came fourteen years after his rather disagreeable and haughty wife Ammura perished of shaking fever. Randurass left over 6 million gold pieces and some twenty-three city rental properties in Athkatla and Berdusk to his only child, Jaranthra.
Jaranthra promptly found herself romantically pursued by most of her father's drinking buddies and business associates, a motley group of grasping men two decades her senior and of coarse, unsophisticated tastes.
She correctly realized her sudden attractiveness had nothing to do with her looks, nor her tongue and the wits behind it, but was rooted solely in her status as an unmarried, stupendously wealthy heiress. Hiding her property deeds and some "spending money" in two new, heavily sealed coffins, Jaranthra converted the rest of her father's coins into gems. Hiring two adventuring bands (one to watch over the other and guard against treachery) as her bodyguards, she fled from Athkatla to Saerloon, purchasing expensive wines as a "cover cargo" and (with a false mustache) posing as a male wine merchant. Buying wagons to ship the coffins and the wine (the coffins hidden in two specially constructed dummy winecasks), she joined an overland caravan.
Upon reaching Saerloon, Jaranthra gave her escorts the slip (but left them the wine -- except for the two "special" casks -- and wagons), shed her disguise, and rented a room in a festhall, where she hired its madam to enhance her looks with cosmetics. As she'd anticipated, the result made Jaranthra look like a lot of aging Sembian matrons trying to cover up their lack of beauty. She moved to Selgaunt and blended in very well, buying many properties under various false names, and becoming a landlord to many.
Jaranthra's personal fascination had always been the study of portals, and one of the most exciting moments of her life was finding an old memoir in a Selgauntan shop that was also (under a clever concealment spell she'd never have spotted if it hadn't been fading) a guide to a long-dead merchant's business secret: a trio of ancient portal links he'd discovered that allowed him to swiftly and covertly deliver small items, documents, and messages (for very stiff fees).
Jaranthra's second excitement was discovering the portals still existed, still worked, and had apparently been forgotten by everyone else. She alone uses a Suzail warehouse-Arabel rooftop link; a link between another Suzail warehouse and a tiny rock islet in a pool deep in the forest near Everlund; and passing by the correct route through a close-spaced trio of trees (within sight of the pool) in Everlund to a blind alley-end in Waterdeep link.
She bought the two warehouses in Suzail, the building under the rooftop in Arabel, and three buildings in Waterdeep clustered around the end of the alley (allowing her to enclose it), and now lives in Suzail, Waterdeep, Arabel, and Everlund, using the portals to move between them. She won't willingly reveal this secret to anyone, for any payment.
Elminster didn't bother to find out where her coins are hidden or who may guard them or Jaranthra.
He's still trying to discover how she learned that her delight in life is giving unexpected, covert, and anonymous gifts of coinage to those in need. He suspects she helps shopkeepers and crafters because her father made his millions exploiting such people, but it's only a guess.
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