Actually, they are a variation of the mmm, Unseen Servant spell, with a bit of, mmm, illusion thrown in to make them, well, seen servants,” said Lord Hefnus. “I seem to recall having flesh and blood staff at one point, but I can't, mmm, remember for the life of me what happened to them.”
“They're probably fertilizing your killer shrubbery,” opined Cooper, holding his now empty bottle upside down in an attempt to glean a last drop or two.
“They were retconned into illusions after I told Mordred just what I thought of his creepy little Xanadu. Caverns and Creatures? More like Dungeons and Date Rape!” Rhonda growled. “I explained to him how damaging the male gaze was to women with body issues, and he thought he could make it all better by making the sex slaves mindless automatons! I told him, 'only a privileged cis patriarch would think further objectification was a solution', and that's when he handed me that d20. And I was so close to finishing my degree in Women's Studies, too. Gimme a refill here.” This last was punctuated by waving her glass at the nude image of what seemed to be a human woman from the neck down and a cuttlefish from the neck up.
“I'd probably banish you too if you implied I was your sister”, said Cooper. “Unless she got the non-bitch genes.”
“Cisgender, you unspeakable choad. Why don't you try reading a book sometime?”
“Illiterate, remember? Also, I find choad to be a hurtful and sexist nomenclature. Surely a socially aware woman like yourself knows that is our word and you have no right to use it!”
Rhonda pretended not to hear, instead turning her attention to Julian and Tim. With Julian's Constitution penalty and Tim's pint-sized frame, alcohol affected them much more quickly than in their real-world bodies. Fifteen minutes ago, they'd been fighting for their lives. Now it looked like they were in a race to catch the train to Blackout City.
“You two morons better head back to the Whore's Head”, Rhonda scolded. “I'm not dragging your sorry asses, and who knows what comes out after dark in this lech's bachelor pad? Come on, Dave, you're the least fucked up, take 'em home.”
Grumbling, Dave put an arm around Tim and grabbed Julian's hand. They made their way through the hedge, being careful to give a wide berth to anything even remotely vine-like. As they staggered through Cooper's entry hole in the fence, Julian had to break off and add a splash of bright purple stomach contents to the whitewashed exterior. None of his elven grace was on display as he trotted to catch up with the others.
“You know, you got me thinking”, said Cooper.
“You, thinking? That's not what I'd call it”, snapped Rhonda.
“Shut up and pour yourself another drink”, said Cooper. “Hefnus here is a wizard,” -here he pointed to the gently snoring form of Lord Hefnus splayed across his lounge chair- “and he's practically dead, so that makes him basically a lich, right? A lech lich! What do you think the Challenge Rating on that would be?”
“Higher than you could count without taking your shoes off, I'm sure. Maybe even your loincloth.”
“I bet you'd like to see me without my loincloth, huh?”
“Maybe if I'd just swallowed poison by accident and needed to puke. Of course, standing downwind of you also has pretty much the same effect.”
“Yeah, well, Julian may have four times as much Charisma as me, but I've got four times the package.”
“Four point two five, dumbass. And leave Julian out of this. Any comparison you make with him is only going to make you look even worse.”
“Sounds like someone has a crush on Juliaaaaan”, teased Cooper. “Just wait till I tell him you want to make the beast with two backs, one of them much hairier than the other-”
“You say a word of that and I'll cast Sleep on you, then Coup De Grace the fuck out of you, you orc-shaped pile of shit!”
“Simmer down, Her-Menstrually Granger, I'm just kidding around. Have another drink already.”
Pouring out the last of the Whistlethorn from the bottle that hadn't been tainted by his mouth, Cooper topped off Rhonda's glass. For a moment, the only sound was Lord Hefnus' soft snore. When he wasn't conscious to order his servants around, they would stand in place as if there was an invisible art class somewhere rendering them in charcoal. Handing off the glass, Cooper sat down and put his feet in the pool. None of the brightly colored fish darting around in it stopped moving or floated to the surface, so they were likely illusory as well.
Rhonda cast a glance at Cooper splashing his feet in Lord Hefnus' pool and took another sip of the amazingly smooth brandy. With a shudder, she noticed that his legs were significantly paler from the shins down. Shallow and about ten feet across, the water in the pool wasn't tea-colored yet, but it was definitely getting there. Steeling herself, she finished off the glass, then sat down next to Cooper. This was going to be tougher than she expected.