The Traveling Merchants of the Western Waste
p. There are several Merchants well known throughout the Western Wastelands, known to not be tied or aligned with any of the several kingdoms in the waste. Each one specializes in a certain kind of ware, though they may not be physical items.
Hongo – The Weapon Merchant
p. Hongo is a Blacksmith said to have a natural forge in the mountains within range of a steel mine which he operates entirely on his own. He usually travels alone, carrying the several weapons he made on his person as well as a backpack of survival supplies. He does this to “field test” the weapons he’s created against the Wastebeast and to sell his weapons to anyone who is willing to buy.
p. His weapons are beyond Masterwork Quality, featuring a unique design makes the weapon seem “hollow”, focusing only on the cutting or piercing edge of the blades, making them just as deadly but with half the weight. They are also flexible and durable, making them less likely to break or chip due to use.
He often comes down with several pre-made weapons, his own personal creations in a effort to find a buyer. He does take request, but often charges double of what his weapons normally cost and it takes 3 months for him to craft a blade, not including traveling time.
The Happiness Salesman
p. The Happiness Salesman is a very mysterious Salesman who has been rumored to have traveled the waste for centuries, an avatar of an ancient deity of mischief and curses. He carries nothing on him except some old tatter robes and a small bag which he puts his coin in.
He is often said to travel to find the most miserable person in the waste and offers to sell them happiness. He never names a price or elaborates on what he means, but only asks you to make an offer. He finds every offer agreeable, though depending on the amount you may suffer a curse or blessing.
If you offer everything you can spare, you are said to be bless with exceptional luck and blessing. If you offer a fair amount, you might receive a small blessing. If reject his offer, you often suffer a fate of misfortune. The worst is offering an insultingly small amount, such as a copper. In such case, a situation that seems beneficial will happen, but either the cause or the consequence will cause great catastrophe.
One story is of a man who was so miserably married that the Happiness Salesman visited him and offered him happiness. The man gave the Happiness Salesmen a copper, to come home to find out his wife was murdered. An attractive mourner had then seduced him during his light grief, only for the town to spread rumors that he had killed his wife to be with his Mistress. The man had known happiness only briefly before he was executed in the town square.
That said, there are many con-artist that use this tale to claim they are the Happiness Salesman to get money from those foolish enough to believe them, causing people to become hesitant to give. Those said to pretend to be the Happiness Salesmen are to meet with a terrible fate…