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Dear Vox Machina: Ask Scanlan

Dear Vox Machina: Ask Scanlan

Good tidings, dear readers!

I will be on holiday for the next few weeks, which means Penny Perrington’s Poppycock & Twaddle advice column will not be available. But fear not, my devoted fans. I have arranged something very special for just for you. During my absence, the members of the famous Vox Machina will be answering your burning questions. Yes, the Vox Machina. How exciting!

Starting our series will be Scanlan Shorthalt, a gnome bard renown for his sharp wit. I leave you in good hands.

Penny Perrington


@_JayneHDear Scanlan,
I am an ardent follower of Eldath, but my fiance is a devout Loviator worshipper. My family insists on a ceremony at a waterfall, but her family is insisting on a ceremony where the entire bridal party is chained to the ceiling and flogged. I thought our interfaith love could stand through anything, but this is tearing us a apart! What can we do to have a wedding that will please both families?
~ Torn in Tunril

Dear Torn,

Your plight is one of the thousands of reasons I have never wed. I’m afraid pleasing both your families may be impossible, so the easiest solution may be to stage your own kidnapping. Hire some half-orcs to ride into your village, grab you and your wife, torch some barns – you know, make a show of it. Then, a month later, return home, bloodied but grateful to be alive. Explain to both sets of parents that the half-orcs forced you to marry in a makeshift ceremony, as is their horrible custom. That way, you avoid a religious ceremony, plus you get a wonderful welcome-back party instead!


Dear Scanlan,
What are the social protocols for naming an enchanted blade? If I inherit it or win it, do I have to keep the name? Can I just declare its name every time I unsheath it, or is it like nicknames and someone else has to name it and have the name catch on, etc.? It’s just that…I really don’t think “Strawberry” is an appropriate name for a greataxe.
~ He Who Wields the Strawberry

Dear Strawberry,

Count your blessings, sir! I have heard far, far worse names for enchanted weapons. A dwarf friend carried a scimitar named “King of Sharts” for years, until he was laughed out of town. There was a warrior in Westruun with a mace named “Crapstone.” And don’t get me started on the ranger I knew with a magical bow called “Assman’s Morningbreath.” “Strawberry” is a fine name, indeed. As a fellow bard once said, “What’s in a name? That which we call a sword by any other name would cut as deep.”


Dear Scanlan,
Can you keep someone in a bag of holding? I’m asking for a friend.
~ Totally Asking For a Friend

Dear Totally,

Grog, I know it’s you, alright? Please stop asking me. For the last time, you cannot put Vax inside the bag of holding. He’ll die. It’s cold, dark, devoid of air, and completely incapable of supporting life. I don’t know who you got to write this letter for you, but I hope they can read this reply. Listen, if you really want to get Vax why don’t you put some itching powder in his breeches? At least that won’t murder him.

P.S. You and me going to the brothel tonight, mate?

Do you have any advice questions that you’re dying to ask Mr. Shorthalt? Leave them in the comments!

Image credits: Amanda Oliver Elm, @_JayneH

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