About halfway through my cup I notice he's still standing there with an awkward look on his face. Thinking he might be upset about the tea, I proffer the cup, "You don't mind do you?"
"Oh, no. It's just that..."
"Hmm?" I ask absent-mindedly, looking around to see if he has any biscuits out.
"It's just hat I'll need fresh honey, blackwort root, and several red berries to make the poison."
"So you said!" I nod. I spy some biscuits on the counter-top nearby. Not fresh by any stretch, but I'm not one to complain out loud.
"And I'll need help getting them, you see," he adds, somewhat apologetically.
I look around the room, slightly irritated. "What? Are they on a high shelf? You're taller than me and then some. Should I fetch a stool for you?"
"No, no no," he laughs. "I mean, I don't have any of those ingredients here."
I slam my teacup down with a rattle. "What do you mean?" I ask horrified and knowing full well where this is going.
"I need you to get those ingredients if you want me to make you the poison."
"What kind of alchemist are you, anyway?" I shout at him through a mouthful of extremely stale and bitter biscuit.
"I'm an herbalist!"
"A whateverist! How can you do your job if you don't keep ingredients around?"
"I do have ingredients!" he protests. "Just not the ones you need!"
"When I go to the blacksmith he doesn't send me to mine some ore for him first!" Actually, I haven't been to a human blacksmith. Maybe that is how they do things around here.
He throws his arms in the air in exasperation. "Well, I'm sorry if I don't have the makings for deadly poison on hand!"
"HONEY?" I wave the dry and half-eaten biscuit at him accusingly. "Is common HONEY so exotic that you don't keep any around?"
"No. I guess not. Actually, I'm not sure why I'd be out of that."
I guess being out of honey might partly explain why he's such a bad cook. I work to down my mouthful. "You are a very bad herbalist. And I didn't want to say anything before, but even your tea is terrible!"
"And that's another thing!" he says raising his voice> "I'm trying to get some work done here, so please stop eating the soap-cakes and drinking all my joint tonic!"
Well, I had hopes that things were looking up, but now we're back to murder and tears.
The first item on our shopping list is honey. Now, most people, when they need honey, would go to the grocer and buy some. But Cartwell has marked the spot on my map where I'm supposed to get the honey, and it turns out to be some rube's back yard. I have to take the honey directly from the the guy's beehive. Theft it is, then.