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[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/c721376e428080d298e55a6a24ab96cd.jpg]]

"[[http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Rogues_in_the_House Rogues in the House]]" is a Literature/ConanTheBarbarian story by Creator/RobertEHoward. First published in January, 1934.

Conan is sitting in prison after killing a priest ([[AssholeVictim he had it coming]]) when he is approached by a nobleman named [[TheDandy Murillo]], who has a proposition for him: kill the Red Priest Nabonidus for him, and he will provide Conan a horse, a sack of gold, and a one way ticket out of town and away from the gallows.

Conan escapes from jail, and, after dealing with the prostitute who turned him in, heads off to Nabonidus's mansion. Conan tries entering through the sewer, only to get stuck down there thanks to one of the mansions traps. While down there, he runs into Murillo, who had arrives there first with the intention of killing Nabonidus himself, thinking [[PoorCommunicationKills Conan had high tailed it out of town]]. They soon discover Nabonidus trapped down there as well, a prisoner in his own home.

Turns out Nabonidus's servant, a man-ape named Thak, has rebelled against his master, and now uses the assortment of traps set around the mansion to keep out unwanted guests (and keep his prisoners in). The three [[TitleDrop rogues]] will have to work together if they ever want to get out of the mansion alive, lest they fall victim to Thak, or perhaps, to each other.

The story has been adapted by Creator/MarvelComics in their ''Conan the Barbarian'' comic, as well as by Creator/DarkhorseComics.

Notable as being one of Howard's personal favorite stories, and one of the stories that he was most happy with the finished result, only having to go through two drafts before publishing. He also remarked on how he was especially happy with the story as his editor didn't force him to add a fetish/nude scene, which was almost a requirement for pulp stories at the time.

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!!Tropes included
%%* AngryGuardDog: Nabonidus has one.
%%* BigFancyHouse: Nabonidus has one, but it has no servants.
* TheBerserker: The effect of a powder on men.
%%* TheDandy: Murillo
%%* DeadlyDecadentCourt
* DroppedABridgeOnHim: Implied. In the chronologically-earlier story "The Hall of the Dead," which Robert E. Howard began and L. Sprague [=DeCamp=] later finished, Conan meets a Gunderman mercenary named Nestor, and they become FireForgedFriends over the course of looting an ancient cursed citadel and fighting the demons and monsters they find there. At the beginning of this story, passing mention is made of Conan's accomplice, an unnamed Gunderman who was captured and executed well before the events of the main narrative. Ohhhh...
* EnemyMine: Conan joins with Nabonidus.
* EvilChancellor: Nabonidus is this to the king.
* ExactWords: Nabonidus promises not to have the king kill Murillo.
* TheExile: Murillo is not sure whether he's been warned to opt for this.
* FingerInTheMail: An ear is sent to Murillo.
* FrazettaMan: Thak, however see ItCanThink. We are told that in 100,000 years or so his people are liable to become human.
* GadgeteerGenius: Nabonidus who uses a lot of ClockPunk tech to safeguard his house.
* GambitPileup: A fairly good description of the plot. Murillo arranges Conan's escape from prison to have him kill Nabonidus, but then ends up going to Nabonidus's mansion to do the job himself when he hears that the escape was botched. Conan, meanwhile, manages to break out of prison on his own, but decides that he could probably use the sack of gold and the fast horse that Murillo promised him once the job was done (and he felt at least partially indebted to Murillo for getting him a good meal while he was in prison), so he heads to the mansion as well. Unfortunately, this is the exact night that Nabonidus's pet Ape-Man Thak decides to rebel against his master. ''And then'', partway through the story, a [[HeroOfAnotherStory band of political rebels]] breaks in with the intent of assassinating Nabonidus (they do [[MuggingTheMonster about as well as you'd expect]]). ''Everyone'' wants to kill Nabonidus, they all want to do it ''right now'', and nothing goes according to plan for any of them.
* GasChamber: Used to disburse the dust of the gray lotus.
* GreatEscape: Arranged for Conan to escape prison and assassinate a target.
* GrayAndGreyMorality: As per the norm for the [[CrapsackWorld Conan universe]], the unnamed city where this story takes place is ''astoundingly'' corrupt and decadent. Even the guard that Murillo bribes to get Conan out of jail is into a bunch of unscrupulous things, which is what gets him caught and the escape stopped. Murillo is a courtier selling state secrets to rival kings. Nabonidus is a Mad Scientist/Dark Wizard type with all kinds of vaguely evil plots in motion. And between them is Conan, amoral sword-for-hire. Everyone pretty much agrees that of the three of them, ''Conan'' is the most morally upright, because [[AtLeastIAdmitIt at least he's not pretending to be anything but a thief and mercenary]].
* HiddenDepths: Murillo is a dandy and a traitor, but he's no coward. Once he hears that his assassination plot has been thwarted, he straps on a sword and heads off to Nabonidus's mansion. Granted, he's acting out of desperation and he doesn't really think he'll pull it off, but he's clearly not going down without a fight.
* ImprobableAimingSkills: Nabonidus dies when Conan throws a stool at him, with enough force and accuracy to drive one of the legs through his skull.
* ImprovisedWeaponUser: Conan's a resourceful guy. When the new guard starts hassling him about the joint of beef he's eating, Conan simply wallops him with the bone and walks out of dungeon. And in the climax of the story, he takes out Nabodinus with a stool.
* IOweYouMyLife: Minor example: one of the reasons Conan decides to carry out the assassination even though Murillo's attempt to get him out of prison fails was because he's got a rough code of honor and feels indebted to him: Murillo made sure that Conan got a decent meal and was unchained beforehand, without which Conan couldn't have had the strength and opportunity to make his own escape. The promise of gold and a ride out of town doesn't hurt either.
* ItCanThink: Thak is not just inhumanely strong, he is also much more intelligent than he looks.
* KilledMidSentence: Conan chucks a stool at Nabonidus's head right in the middle of his dramatic monologue. We'll never know what his final booby trap was now.
* KillerGorilla: Thak's portrayal is somewhere between this and a more typical Frazetta man.
* TheMole: Murillo sells secrets to foreigners.
* NobleFugitive: Murillo thinks of this but it might not be allowed.
* NotSoDifferent: Conan's opinion of Thak: 'I have slain a ''man'' tonight, not a ''beast''. I will count him among the chiefs whose souls I've sent into the dark. My women will sing of him.'
%%* TheRat: The priest who betrayed Conan
%%* TurnCoat
%%* VillainOpeningScene
* WorthyOpponent: At the end Conan acknowledges Thak as this.
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