The Three Of Swords Author:Fritz Leiber Civilization ... All his young life Fafhrd had hungered for it; in his mind, the Eight Cities were places of wonder, and he meant to see them one day. Neither the potent magic of his mother and the other Snow Women nor the passion of his betrothed would keep him in Cold Corner. — Cold Corner was not fit place for a man with adventure in his soul.... more » Its women chained men to their will, destroying inner fire with spells cast with chilling ferocity. Fafhrd's father had escaped ... for a while. Defying his wife, he'd left home for the distant mountains he loved. But he died when a preternatural cold shattered his rope on a peak called White Fang-a message not lost on his son.
Witchy cold might follow him, Fafhrd knew; wherever ice once flowed, magic could send it again. Yet the youth remained undaunted, determined to fulfill his dream. It was only a matter of when and how.
He never expected opportunity to present itself in the form of a seductive actress from the south-a beautiful thief who would introduce him to the glorious perils of the fabled city of Lankhmar.
"My Gray Mouse, still midway in his allegiance between white magic and black," the wizard Glavas Rho had described his young apprentice. It was true. Mouse had tried to be all that his master wished, but his spirit did favor swords over wands...the sinuousities of the left-handed path over the straight, steep road of the right. As Rho had discerned, the young man was more cat than mouse.
The Master was gone now-betrayed by one he'd trusted, murdered by powerful enemies-and Mouse's darker nature had asserted itself. In a secret cave, he'd poured his hatred into a spell that would kill the killer with exquisite slowness. Only then Mouse, too, was betrayed.
But fate works in strange ways. For the girl who revealed Mouse's cave-his enemy's weak, frightened daughter-found courage at last. She rescued him from her father's torturers and fled with him to the anonymity of Lankmar's underworld. There, in that decadent corner of civilization, Mouse first me Fafhrd, and a unique, heroic alliance was born...
Swords and Deviltry; Swords against Death; and Swords in the Mist in one volume.« less