The little things matter

The original Murder Hobos, drawn by Ed Brabant.

If there’s one thing the last year taught me, it’s that the small things matter more than I realized.

We haven’t played D&D as a group for about 2 months now. Possibly 3. My mind’s a little fuzzy this morning as to when the last session actually was. There were reasons for every delay. One player contracted COVID between his shots (recovered quickly, thank the Goddess), new houses were bought and moving happened. Small children and spouses were ill with various maladies.

Basically, life took over.

One player has a chance each year where their work schedule will shift, making their days off change. With the first cast, they gave me carte blanche to do whatever I felt like to their character. I did a small side quest that morphed into a main storyline. LOL. I’m trying to do that now, with another player who’s been absent for almost a year, but my mind’s been in the book instead of the quick D&D stories.

If I have time to write, the book has my focus. Sorry, Matt. Blastaar deserves better, and I know it.

In May, we found out the one player’s schedule was getting shifted where they would have Sunday off instead of Saturday. I put it to a group vote, and everyone else was good with Sunday. I developed a schedule of sorts, so we knew ahead of time when we would & wouldn’t play due to holidays.

And then the player got told the schedule shift wasn’t happening until June. We kept with Sundays, based on everyone else had already adjusted their plans. Plus, I knew I could develop a few smaller dungeon crawls we could have fun with until June got here.

Last week….baby was sick. Our oldest made a surprise trip home from college. Life happened. Again.

Today, though…today we’re playing. I’m confident enough in people showing up that I prepped the coffee pot to brew. It hasn’t been turned on for a full pot since February or March.

That one act, small as it seems, meant a lot to me. Because today’s session is one we’ve been unable to do since March of 2020.

We’re going to be around the table, not socially distanced. There will be food, and no masks. We’re all fully vaccinated and past the 2 weeks since our last shots.

There’s a sense of magic I find when D&D is played this way that’s been missing. The banter between players, leaning across the table to see a die roll come up, or revealing part of the map or monster and see their reactions. The game is a social one, where we take clues from each other to make it enjoyable for everyone. With masks, everyone sitting far apart, or online…that was muted.

The Murder Hobos have survived a pandemic of epic game proportions. Today, though, that small bit of normal comes back to us.

The best coffee I have in my cupboard is ready to be brewed. My dice are dying to be rolled. I’ll clean off the table soon, lay out the Dungeonstone, and smile.

My family’s coming over today. And I even get to hug them. No matter the outcome of the game, that alone makes today a great one.

BB/Chan Eil Eagal Orm

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