Chapter #136

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                                +
                              +   +
                            +       +
                          +           +
                        +               +
                      +                   +
                    +                       +
                  +      THE ADVENTURERS      +
                    +                       +
                      +      Epic II      +
                        +               +
                          +           +
                            +       +
                              +   +
                                +



+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+    The various characters contained in these writings are   +
+  copyright 1993 by Thomas Miller.  Any resemblance to any   +
+  persons or characters either real or fictional is utterly  +
+  coincidental.  Copying and/or distribution of these tales  +
+  is permissible only under the sole condition that no part  +
+  of them will be used or sold for profit.  In that case, I  +
+  hope you enjoy them...                                     +
+                                                             +
+                            Thomas Miller                    +
+                            tmiller@cimmeria.gatech.edu      +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+   THE PARTY:                                                +
+                                                             +
+   Alindyar      15th level drow elf mage              (N)   +
+      Lyra       12th level female drow elf mage       (N)   +
+   Belphanior    12th/13th/13th level high elf w/m/t  (CN)   +
+   Ged           13th/13th level grey elf priest/mage (NG)   +
+      Arnold     11th level human warrior             (NG)   +
+        ?             grey cat (familiar)             (NG)   +
+   Mongo         15th level dwarf warrior             (CG)   +
+      Flint      11th level dwarf warrior             (CG)   +
+   Peldor        18th level human thief                (N)   +
+   Rillen        15th level human warrior              (N)   +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+   Date:    n/a                                              +
+   Time:    n/a                                              +
+   Place:   some alternate dimension                         +
+   Climate: n/a                                              +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+   "When the going gets tough, the smart get lost."          +
+                                          - Robert Byrne     +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++





                   CXXXVI.  Split Decisions





  Having been magically transported to a parallel dimension,
the adventurers have encountered most of their analogues in
this universe.  After several days of travel and various
encounters, they have made their way into the lower floors
of the evil Ged's fortress.  Accompanying them on their
mission:  this world's Belphanior, Peldor, and Rillen, all
of whom have their own reasons for going with the party.
The other Belphanior's wolf, Sparky, rounds out this merry
band.  Moving a flagstone, the invaders have entered the
dark, dismal dungeon that rests in the depths of the huge
fortress.

Belphanior-2:  Notice anything about this place?
Mongo:  Good stonework?
Belphanior-2:  No, no, no.  Look.  (he points to some
  prisoners in cells, at the far end of this chamber)
Ged:  Prisoners!  Common decency dictates that we should
  free them.
Belphanior-2:  What, and alert the whole castle to our
  presence?  Thanks, but no thanks.
Belphanior:  But think of the chaos it would create...
Rillen:  (notices that there are two exits)  Hmm, I have
  an idea.
Mongo:  What's that?
Rillen:  Maybe we should split up.
Ged:  You mean into two groups?
Rillen-2:  A good strategy.
Flint:  Why's that?
Rillen:  Because it instantly doubles our chances of finding
  that magical mirror we seek.
Mongo:  Hmm...you're right.
Ged:  Mirror?
Arnold:  The one that can return us to our own dimendsion?
Ged:  Oh, that mirror.  Of course.
Arnold:  Yah.
Ged:  Thanks for the vote of support, Arnold.
Peldor:  I agree with this idea.  There's simply too many
  of us right now.
Peldor-2:  Aye.
Belphanior-2:  True.  The only fallacy...what if one group
  runs into the evil Ged?
Ged:  We'll just have to cope, I guess.
Mongo:  Hey, battle means noise.  Especially magical battle.
  One group'll find the other soon enough.
Belphanior:  (anticipating bloodshed)  This'll be fun!
Alindyar:  This is _highly_ illogical.  I just want to point
  that out.
Lyra:  I agree with him.
Peldor:  Aw, you always agree with him.
Lyra:  Not necessarily.
Alindyar:  But usually.
Lyra:  (stares daggers at Alindyar)  Keep it up, smartass,
  and you'll be sleeping alone for a week.
Peldor:  Heh.
Peldor-2:  That would be a shame.
Ged:  Don't get her started.  (he realizes that he can't
  really tell the two Peldors apart)  Whoa.
Mongo:  (chuckles)
Rillen-2:  We are wasting valuable time here.  (he checks
  his weaponry)
Rillen:  True.
Ged:  How to split, then?

  After a bit of debate, the group was divided as follows.
The first band would consist of Belphanior, Belphanior-2,
Ged, Arnold, Rillen, and the wolf Sparky.  The second would
be composed of Rillen-2, Peldor, Peldor-2, Mongo, Flint,
Alindyar, and Lyra.  Each group would take a separate path,
and whoever found the mirror would take it.

Ged:  Well, Peldor, I won't be seeing you for a while.
  Either of you.
Peldor:  Yeah, I know.  What will you do?
Peldor-2:  How will you cope?
Rillen:  (to Rillen-2)  Good luck.  I trust your skill will
  aid your group muchly.
Rillen-2:  As yours will aid yours.  (they clasp hands)
Mongo:  (to Ged)  Well, old friend, this is it.  We'll kill
  or be killed.
Ged:  As always.  Take care.
Alindyar:  (to Ged)  Be sure to dazzle them with your
  wizardry.
Ged:  You too.
Lyra:  This is kind of sad.
Peldor:  Not really.  We'll probably meet up again soon
  enough.
Peldor-2:  (staring at Lyra)
Lyra:  (wanders toward Alindyar)
Peldor:  She's a fox, isn't she?
Peldor-2:  Yep.

  The two miniature parties waved farewell to one another,
and were soon gone.

Lyra:  (peeps back into the dungeon)  Okay.  They're gone
  now.
Peldor:  (leads the others in his group back into the
  dungeon)  You can cast this?
Lyra:  Of course.
Alindyar:  'Tis a simple spell.  Even for her.
Lyra:  (kicks Alindyar)
Rillen-2:  I yet fail to understand what we are doing.
Peldor:  It's simple, really.  (he quickly picks the lock on
  the main cell door)  Aha.  (he and Peldor-2 set about
  picking the locks of the sub-cells, where prisoners are
  actually held)  See, we open everything.
Peldor-2:  Then she casts her spell of holding portals upon
  the main cell door.
Peldor:  Then, these guys are still imprisoned...but only
  until the spell runs out.
Peldor-2:  And then-
Mongo:  I get it!  Then we have a surprise distraction!
Flint:  Which could really help us, depending on what kind
  of trouble we get into.
Mongo:  Uh...yeah.
Peldor:  Problem was, I knew some of the others wouldn't
  have gone for it.
Peldor-2:  Nope.  So we waited.
Alindyar:  Hmm.  The concept could certainly do no harm.
Lyra:  No.  (prepares her spell)  None at all.  These men
  may actually be grateful.
Peldor:  There!  That's the last of the locks.  (they all
  step back, outside the main door, as the prisoners start
  to gather)
Lyra:  (quickly casts her spell)
prisoner:  This sucks rocks!  You know that, don't you?
Peldor:  Of course.
Peldor-2:  But...think of the alternative.
Peldor:  We can't have you botching up our invasion.
  Just think - you'll have a chance, where you had none
  before!
Lyra:  You should be happy that you'll get a chance at all.
prisoner:  (sulks)
Mongo:  Aw, come on, pal!  You don't have a thing to worry
  about.  We'll raise enough hell so that you'll be finding
  guards with their backs to you-
Peldor:  A superb way to find them.
Mongo:  -or else they'll be dead...
Flint:  Yeah!  We're gonna kick ASS!
Mongo:  Geez, this was really a good idea.
Peldor:  Well, two Peldors can think of twice as many good
  ideas as a single Peldor.
Peldor-2:  And the ideas will be twice as good, too.
Peldor:  Yes, indeed.
Lyra:  Okay.  My spell will work for...err...one hour.  At
  that time, you people will be free to go.
Peldor:  (telling the prisoners where he saw a cache of
  axes and swords in the other room)
Alindyar:  (his brow furrows)  One hour?
Lyra:  Well, I was going to make it two, but things could
  get dangerous up there.
Alindyar:  _Two_ hours?
Peldor:  Ho-hum.  Let's go.  (they all leave the dungeon)

prisoner:  An hour?
other prisoner:  How will we know when our hour is up?

outside...

Alindyar:  What in the hells is this "one hour" nonsense?
  You know as well as I do that your spell will only last
  for ten minutes or so.
Lyra:  Twelve, actually.  Shame on you.
Alindyar:  Whatever.  (throws up his hands)  Why did you
  lie to yonder men?
Lyra:  Well, we couldn't tell them "twelve minutes". I
  had no choice but to bluff.
Peldor:  Ah, they'll never figure it out.
Mongo:  Enough babble.  We're wasting precious time.
Rillen:  Agreed.  Let us begone.  (they head up a large
  flight of stairs)



elsewhere...

Belphanior:  I hope the others stay out of trouble.
Belphanior-2:  I get the feeling that we won't...
Rillen:  They can handle themselves.
Ged:  Some of them, at any rate.
Arnold:  Yah.  Ah-nold is ready!
Sparky:  Graaar.





next time :  the madness begins...!

notes     :  What you are reading never really got played
           out.  I have to simulate it, basically because
           I don't want to wait until (at least) January
           to try and get the players back together, when
           it might not even be possible.  Plan B...
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