Chapter #256

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

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+    Many of the locations, non-player characters, spells, and      +
+  other terms used in these stories are the property of TSR, Inc.  +
+  However, this does not mean that TSR in any way endorses or      +
+  authorizes their use, and any such items contained within these  +
+  stories should not be considered representative of TSR in any    +
+  way, shape, or form.                                             +
+    The player characters contained in these writings are copy-    +
+  right 1995 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.oit.gatech.edu  +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+  THE PARTY:                                                       +
+                                                                   +
+  Mongo        17th level dwarven warrior                    (CG)  +
+     Gorin     8th level dwarven warrior                     (CG)  +
+  Bosco        10th level halfling thief                      (N)  +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+  Date:        2/5/575 C.Y. (Common Year)                          +
+  Time:        afternoon                                           +
+  Place:       the foothills of the Lortmil Mountains              +
+  Climate:     cold                                                +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
+  "Peace is highly overrated."                                     +
+                     - General Katana, from (sic) _Highlander 2_   +
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++





                     CCLVI.  In Search of...





  After a recent battle, Mongo has decided to seek out the greatest
armor that he can find, to replace the ruined suit he now wears.
Along with Gorin and Bosco, he has been traveling for several weeks,
riding westward; at long last, the trio has arrived at the Lortmil
Mountains.

Gorin:  Where is it we're going, again?
Mongo:  Into the Lortmils.  Specifically, to Thunderdelve Mountain,
  the home of Yod Ironbeard.
Bosco:  Yod who?
Gorin:  (in an awestruck voice)  Yod Ironbeard?  _The_ Yod Ironbeard?
Mongo:  Yep.
Bosco:  Who the heck is Yod Ironbeard?
Gorin:  The greatest dwarf who ever lived!  Legends of him can be
  heard from coast to coast, from mountain range to valley.
Mongo:  (to Bosco)  Of all dwarven heroes in recent centuries, one
  rises above the rest.  Yod Ironbeard's exploits are legendary.
Bosco:  (thinking of his own exploits, he crosses his arms)  How
  legendary are we talking about?
Gorin:  He led the great dwarven army at the battle of Gnorr Plain.
Mongo:  He was also one of those who destroyed the Cask of T'zen,
  thereby preventing war with the Bandit Kingdoms some years ago.
Gorin:  Then he slew the great dragon Feuerhauch and liberated
  Thunderdelve Mountain.
Mongo:  ...which he promptly filled with the finest dwarven army
  ever assembled.  He also cleared out the deep halls beneath the
  mountain, and rebuilt the glorious dwarven city that had been in
  shambles for centuries.
Bosco:  That's it?
Gorin:  Those are his best-known exploits.  Of course, he also had
  a hand in dozens of other legendary adventures and quests.
Mongo:  Some say that he once slew a demon with his bare hands.
Gorin:  Yeah...hey, why are we going to see him, anyway?  What does
  a great hero have to do with new armor for you?
Bosco:  Yeah, what?
Mongo:  All the sages in Greyhawk spoke of one armor suit that was
  more powerful than all others...forged by the gods, eons ago.
  It's said to be impervious to any and all damage!  (his eyes
  light up)  The finest armor ever created!  And the last place
  this armor was known to be...was in the treasure hoard of the
  evil Feuerhauch!
Bosco:  Whoa!  That means that Yod Ironbeard has it!
Gorin:  It would seem so.
Bosco:  (thinking  of robbery, perhaps)  And we have to get it.
Mongo:  I wouldn't put it that way.  I doubt that Yod puts up with
  any shit.  I'll have to find some way to convince him to sell it
  to me, or maybe trade...(he ponders this problem)  We'll just have
  to cross that bridge when we come to it.
Bosco:  Hey, I could steal it for you if you w-
Mongo:  Let's have no more talk of stealing, Bosco.
Bosco:  (looking entirely too happy)  'nuff said!
Mongo:  (gives Bosco the evil eye)

  They were riding along a trail, which entered the valley between
two mountains.  The treeline grew thicker as they moved northward,
and the terrain to the sides became steeper.  Only a sparse carpet
of snow covered the ground here, but they could see the thick white
caps of the surrounding peaks, higher up.  The sun's warmth provided
some contrast to the below-freezing temperature.

Bosco:  So where are all these dwarves, anyway?  How are we gonna
  find them?
Mongo:  Oh, they own these mountains.  They'll find us, be sure of
  it.  They'll find us.

  They journeyed onward for several hours; twice, they encountered
dwarven patrols.  For whatever reason (it probably had to do with
Mongo and Gorin's presence) the trio was allowed to pass without
incident or harassment.  Indeed, for a time, one of the squads of
hardy dwarves rode with them.

Mongo:  (casually)  So, what's old Ironbeard been up to?
dwarven captain:  He's not that old.  (eyes Mongo)  But anyway,
  things have been peaceful in these parts, for a long time.
  Maybe too long.
Gorin:  What's so unusual about things staying peaceful?  After all,
  the Lortmils are surrounded by good kingdoms...Celene, Veluna,
  the Uleks...
Bosco:  Ulek?
dwarven captain:  Good kingdoms they may be...but the goblins and
  such still persist, in some of the deeper, more distant caverns.
  And then, the Horned Society and Iuz loom, farther north.  Any
  peace longer than a few years is cause for worry.
Mongo:  You think they're up to no good?
dwarven captain:  I think that _something_ is going on, an opinion
  shared by many of our people.  Including, fortunately, Ironbeard
  himself.  And that's yet another reason he's a good king.
Bosco:  Eh?  Whatever do you mean?
dwarven captain:  Yod has a talent...nay, a sixth sense about these
  things.  He _knows_ when trouble's on the way.  The better for him
  to meet it head-on.
Gorin:  Yod Ironbeard...greatest of the dwarven heroes...I can't
  wait to meet him.
dwarven captain:  I hope you have something important for him,
  youngster, if you think to meet him.  He's pretty busy, and has
  no time to waste.
Mongo:  He'll talk to us.  (looking over the gaping holes in his
  armor)  He has to.
other dwarf:  Say, friend, what happened to that armor?  It looks
  pretty mangled...
Mongo:  A big, ugly dragon-thing chewed it up.
dwarf:  Oh.  Well, good thing you weren't in it at the time, eh?
other dwarves:  (laugh)
Mongo:  As a matter of fact, I was.
dwarves:  (laughing harder at this great jest)
Mongo:  Har-umph.

  They journeyed deeper into the mountains over the next days,
meeting various (and numerous) dwarven patrols along the way.  It
appeared that Yod Ironbeard kept the mountains well-patrolled and
defended.

Mongo:  Yep, this is a good setup.  Remember those outposts we've
  been passing?
Bosco:  Outposts?  I'd call 'em forts!
Gorin:  And heavily-armed forts at that.
Mongo:  Well, anyway, those have been put in place at all the most
  strategic points within these peaks.  I daresay Yod's got several
  thousand troops deployed in these mountains - and those are the
  ones _not_ in Thunderdelve.  No army could invade this area.
Gorin:  I believe you're right.
Bosco:  It would take a lone thief, of utmost skill and-
Mongo:  Look there.  (he gestures ahead)

  Another dwarven patrol was stationed at the road in front of
them.  This one was larger in number, and better-armed, than any
of those they had seen previously.  Tents and campfires dotted
the outpost, which was surrounded by a sturdy stone palisade.

Mongo:  Hail, there!
dwarven lieutenant:  Well-met, travelers.  What is your business
  in the lands of Yod Ironbeard?
Mongo:  We seek the great one's counsel and advice.
other dwarven soldier:  Many seek it.
Mongo:  Maybe, but how many come bearing gifts-  (he reaches into
  his pack)  -such as this?

  The dwarf held up a magnificent diamond, easily two hands in width
and sparkling like a miniature sun.  There were various "oohs" and
"aahs" from the dwarven soldiers, as well as Gorin and Bosco.

Gorin:  Whoa...nice rock!
Bosco:  (eyeing the gemstone, fists clenched)  Yeaaahhhh.
Mongo:  (to the lieutenant)  This is but one of the gifts I offer
  your lord, in exchange for his advice on a matter of dire import.
dwarven lieutenant:  (his eyes gleaming, as do those of all dwarves
  when confronted with great treasure)  Uh...yeah, I'm sure he'll
  grant you an audience.  (to a subordinate)  Take a squad of the
  troops and escort these visitors to the fortress.
Mongo:  Now you're talking.
Bosco:  The gem-  you're going to-  (he shakes his head)  -GIVE it
  to him, just to get to talk to him?!?
Mongo:  Yup.
Bosco:  Ack!  A great gem such as that belongs-
Mongo:  -wherever I choose to put it.  It's mine.  If you want one
  you'll have to get your own.
Bosco:  (muttering to himself)  That can be arranged...

  The dwarves led the three adventurers through a forested pass;
about half an hour later, they emerged from the heavy tree cover
and beheld a spectacular sight, one that awed them as nothing else
could.

  Before them was a huge fortress - or was it a mountain?  Both,
perhaps; the gigantic structure appeared to have been carved from
the stone of the mountain itself.  In the its face were mounted a
pair of mighty gates, some fifty feet in height.  To either side
of these ominous portals was a wide tower, perhaps forty feet in
diameter; these twin towers were at least a hundred feet high.
Narrow, barred windows dotted their walls, and armed sentries
could be seen at their tops, mere specks at this distance.  More
windows were cut into the mountain face on either side of the
towers.
  A mighty road led up to the twin gates; it was slightly ramped,
and built of large stone blocks.  The road was wide enough to
permit three wagons, abreast, to ascend to the fortress.  The sun
was going down, and they could make out the light of torches from
some of the windows in the fortress.

Bosco:  Now _that's_ a fortress!
dwarven soldier:  Behold...Thunderdelve Mountain!
Gorin:  It's everything the tales say...and more...
Mongo:  That it is.





next:   into Thunderdelve!
ftp:    ftp.digex.net in /pub/access/dpm/rpg/stories/adventurers
www:    http://www.gatech.edu/oit/staff/ns/thomas.miller/adv.html
notes:  Thunderdelve Mountain is located on your Greyhawk map, at
  hex D5/100 (at the very northern terminus of the Lortmils)  While
  I'm at it, Geds land is at hex E4/86 (just west of Greyhawk)

    I had an interesting weekend.  I saw a sneak preview of _First
  Knight_, and it was a lot better than I expected.  Sunday, I
  went to the Atlanta Fantasy Fair, and met Dwight Schultz and Dirk
  Benedict (better known, perhaps, as Face and Murdock from _The
  A-Team_)  I also bought a copy of _Pulp Fiction_, and picked up
  some old TV shows (the 2-part Bigfoot story from _The Six Million
  Dollar Man_ as well as the 2-part Pegasus story from _Battlestar
  Galactica_)  Last but not least, I got a copy of one of those new
  Godzilla movies from Japan (did you know that they're re-making
  all of 'em?)

    Well, I've been putting this off for awhile now.  Yep, it's
  time again for fan mail.  This batch covers anything and every-
  thing up through episode 249.



>>  I like time-outs for detailed descriptions and character
>>  development (or character resource development in this case)
>>  I was honestly having a hard time imagining just what the Green
>>  Dragon Inn looked like, both from a floor-plan view and from a
>>  general appearance.  I really have a feel for the place now,
>>  and it's a lot nicer than I had imagined.
>>
>>  Leonard

  Glad to hear it.  That's why I did the 2-part inn writeup.



>>  I am new to Adventurers....brand new.  I have seen your later
>>  stories and thought they were great.
>>  Being as you said in your FAQ you had comic books, maybe you
>>  can relate to the comparison of when reading a new title for a
>>  few months finding you like it and trying to go back to the very
>>  beginning because you like it so much.  Well unfortunately I
>>  have to go way back...:)
>>
>>  Calvin

  Yep, and the longer I write, the more this series looks like a
comic book.  Except for no pictures.  I bet the TSR of old would
have co-operated with me to get these things made into comic books.
Hmm, what's next - a mini-series starring a single character?



  Now for a rarity:  some semi-negative feedback:

>>    Just finished this part, and i'm very dissapointed the way
>>  Peldor is handling this one. He seems very gut-like to me. Has
>>  he becomed scared without Belphanior around? Speeking of which,
>>  when is he due for re-appearance??  Looking forward to seeing
>>  him getting his revenge.....Maybe him and Peldor can team up
>>  together and finally taking over Greyhawk's thieves guild...
>>
>>  This 'Whisper' character btw, reminds me about the fellow
>>  Drist'do Urden (or something) arch enemy thief. (The two-weapon
>>  combo dude)
>>
>>  Kjetil

  I assume you're saying Peldor was weak in those recent episodes.
My original version of 245 had him doing it all - he orchestrated
the entire downfall of Tomas, and even killed the thief himself.
I changed it because the city of Greyhawk's Thieves Guild is not
a force to be taken lightly, and Peldor, powerful though he is,
can't control everything.
  By the way, I'm a big fan of Rob Salvatore's work, especially
the drow warrior Drizzt Do'Urden.

  More from Kjetil:

>>  Do you have many proofreaders? And what's their job beside
>>  pointing out spelling errors?

  There are currently 6 proofreaders.  They not only find spelling
and grammar errors, but also logical ones.  Often, they suggest new
twists and plotlines that I use.  The proofreaders are chosen by me
from those fans who regularly send me high-quality feedback.

>>  So you did have a more ruthless approach to Peldor's problem as
>>  i suspected.  Is it possible to read this version?  Well imho
>>  the compromise was not very good. The readers (us) are more used
>>  to a ruthless Peldor than a compromise sort of Peldor.

  Sorry you think that; most readers didn't seem to agree with you.
In any case, not everyone will like every story.  In this case, I
did what I felt was right, given Peldor's personality and goals.

>>  Btw, i would like to discuss things like these with others on
>>  the list.  That would bring out many ideas for you to write i
>>  think. How do i send it to the mailing-list??

  I don't know if the people on the list have the time or desire
to talk with other fans about the stories.  The best thing is to
send me ideas and feedback - they'll make their way through the
pipeline eventually.

TM>  What exactly was your major problem with the way things went?
TM>  Or to put it another way, what do you think should have
TM>  happened?

>>  Well i did'nt have any major problems, but i like a Peldor who
>>  is more innovative and active in things. Maybe i'm just drawing
>>  comparisons between how i like to rpg and the way you've
>>  portraited Peldor before. He is so much alike me: sneaky, clever,
>>  smart you name it.  Therefore i was a little dissapointed in the
>>  current version of 245. Sure Peldor did some smart things, but i
>>  think you let "the powers behind" do most of the dirty work.

  I never thought of Peldor as a naural born killer.  Unlike, say,
Belphanior.  They aren't the same.

>>  But i agree with you point of view to: that you don't like a
>>  totally ruthless Peldor. But i think i prefer a litte more
>>  nastier version....after all he IS a single classed 19th lvl
>>  thief!!! And that's pretty high. There cannot be many higher
>>  ranking thieves in Greyhawk can it? Maybe that's the reason
>>  he's just been appointed Master Thief for the River Quarters.

  Let me say it now:  Peldor is, without a doubt, the highest level
thief in Greyhawk.  Despite that, he isn't the most experienced
politician, or leader, or even innkeeper.  Not yet.  Peldor needs
some years to get used to city life and intrigues, but then - mark
my words - he will grow in power as well as experience.



>>  A great series of episodes, Thomas.  I apologize for not writing
>>  sooner, but things have been getting hectic around work, so I
>>  don't always have time to do personal e-mail.  The upside is
>>  that I get to read several episodes in a sitting when I do
>>  eventually make the time.

  That's the best way to do it.

>>  These solo and semi-solo adventures have been very enjoyable.
>>  It's given me a chance to really get to know the various char-
>>  acters a little better.  I'd also like to commend you on de-
>>  AD&D-izing the stories.  It makes things so much more readable
>>  when I can't recognize the underlying game mechanics.
>>
>>  I did have one question:  In the description of the Green Dragon
>>  Inn, you said that suites were 5gp/night, yet Peldor is charging
>>  the drow 40gp/week under "friends" rates.  With friends like
>>  that...;-) ;-)
>>
>>  Keep up the great work!
>>
>>              Greg

  Glad you liked the recent run of stories.  I'm doing my best to
hide any AD&D mechanics, though sometimes it's hard.  About those
inn rates...well, Peldor must have changed his mind.  Yeah, that's
it...



>>  I wish that you could still have them archived somewhere.  It
>>  would make this a lot easier on both you and all your fans.
>>  Good ol' TSR... <shudder>  I guess I'll just have to buy a few
>>  disks and start my own private archive.
>>
>>  I've really enjoyed "The Adventurers" for about the past year
>>  or so.  A friend had his own "archive" of your stories, let
>>  me read them, and showed me how to get them from Usenet News.
>>  I've eagerly awaited the newest episode ever since.
>>  Unfortunately,  I guess our feed is pretty sporadic, because
>>  apparently I've missed quite a few episodes, not to mention I'm
>>  a few episodes behind - I just received the episode where
>>  Alindyar and Lyra rent a room at Peldor's inn.  I see in Book
>>  12 there's quite a bit more you've written.  A hearty "Thank
>>  you very much" is in order.
>>    I really want to congratulate you on such a great job.  The
>>  time and effort you've put into these stories must be tremendous.
>>  You've really fleshed out all the characters, given them their
>>  own  personalities and quirks, and kept everything very
>>  consistent with the original played characters.  Not too terribly
>>  easy to do considering there's what, 12 or so individual easily
>>  identifiable persons running about.
>>
>>  Robert

  I hope to have eliminated the "sporadic news feed" problem, via
two methods.  One is my mailing list.
  I'm glad you like the fleshing out of the characters.  Remember,
though, that they were each created and characterized by the players
themselves.  All I can take credit for is continuing their exploits.



>>  I've been following these posts for a couple of months now, and
>>  am wondering whether I can get copies of the older ones from
>>  you?  I know that the TSR and their strikes against FTP sites.
>>  But are you still willing to email the posts?!?  I would like
>>  to start seeing whatever the original ones were...   I mean I
>>  started in the 200s...  I'd like to see the beginning.  (Then
>>  again I'd like to see it all...)
>>
>>  Neal

  Yes, I am willing to email stories, if absolutely necessary.  But
it should no longer be necessary for most of you.



>>  I really like the individual adventures.  All the characters
>>  have become larger tahn life and giving them all the attention
>>  they need would be difficult in one group.  (Kind of like a
>>  movie with too many good actors, who is the star?)

  Yep, this problem haunts me regularly...

>>  One thing that I would like to see in the Adventurers which I
>>  believe would add additional depth to the characters would be
>>  some conflict _between_ them.  Not outright combat, just
>>  conflicting goals.  Some loose ends and hints in the individual
>>  storires which culminate to one of the party having to choose
>>  between their own personal gain and one of the other members.
>>  I think Belphanior would fit this role rather well.
>>
>>  marc

  I do believe you're on to something, my friend.  :)



  (a long complaint about the Rune saga being forgotten, and the
   deux-ex-machina nature of Belphanior's regeneration on Earth,
   deleted)

  I have to take full blame (if that's the right word) for the
nonconclusion of the Rune deal, after the Earth trip.  Real life
eclipsed the stories for a time.  I did wrap it up, though, using
NPC's descriptions.  Think about it:  the PCs were away, so others
took care of business.  I guess I could have done a better job of
describing it, but technically, it was dealt with.
  Belphanior's eye's regeneration power was something that had been
in the back of my mind for awhile, and I introduced it in dramatic
fashion.

>>  Some ideas I think would be fun to incorporate:  I would really
>>  like to see a long, involved adventure that takes place entirely
>>  underwater.  According the the AD&D world, the population
>>  beneath the waves is roughly equivalent to that on land... yet
>>  the land part rarely has any idea the ocean beings are there at
>>  all.  Seems there would be a whole slew of challenges, creatures,
>>  npc's, and events that even a powerful group like the Adventurers
>>  could get involved in in such a setting. Or even just smaller
>>  subsets of them.  Perhaps the water rune could be somehow
>>  involved in causing it to come about? *shrug*

  The rescue of Bosco's soul kinda hit on this plotline...but there
are, no doubt, great aquatic adventures on Oerth too, just waiting
to happen...

>>  Hmm.. how about an episode with the Wispy Thing as the main
>>  character?  8)  Now that'd no doubt be an interesting one.

  Hmm, I'll have to think about that.

>>  It'd also be interesting to see one of the bunch get really
>>  dragged down through the gutter for a while. Have them lose
>>  everything.  Possessions, reputation, etc etc. And see how
>>  they handle it, and the subsequent rebuilding (and no, I don't
>>  mean having them get a few of their things taken (ie: the drow
>>  and their pocket dimension) which they promptly retrieve an
>>  episode or two later, after defeating the bad guy responsible.
>>  I mean 'gone for good'. Not all hardships are overcome by
>>  destroying whoever is responsible.  Sometimes that just makes
>>  the hardships worse.  Everyone likes a good personal angst
>>  story.
>>   Besides, it'd be interesting to see how someone like Belphanior
>>  would handle having zero magical items (this includes Blackrazor,
>>  his spellbooks, and the Eye, et al), or how Mongo would deal
>>  without the Hammer and other magical paraphernalia, or Peldor
>>  as #1 most wanted, without the Green Dragon, his tattoos, or
>>  other magical effects, etc etc.  Over the years they've acquired
>>  quite a collection of things, and I always find it hard to
>>  believe any of the folks they come across could pose any sort
>>  of challenge at all, given the resources.  Some of them are, in
>>  some ways, becoming products of their possessions.

  Again, a good idea.  I'm planning on doing something along these
lines, soon.  You'll have to wait and see.

>>  It'd also be interesting to write in the permanent death of one
>>  of the main characters. But I doubt the rest of your readers
>>  would let you get away with it, unless you relegated the fate
>>  to one of the old guys like Halberad, Peyote or Rob (now more
>>  occassionaly reoccuring npc's then main characters).

  Well, I know at least one person who'd kill me if I killed Rob.
Halbarad seems to have gained a bit of popularity recently...I
wonder why?

>>  Granted, the last two of these ideas would lean heavily on your
>>  ability as a story teller, and character builder, but you've
>>  proved you can do it, given a decent hook to cast. =)
>>
>>  Aaron

  Hmm, sounds like a challenge!    :)



>>  Also about 246, I enjoy the role-playing politics involved in
>>  the stories, and Peldor's adventure is shaping up to be my
>>  favorite.  (Peldor always was my favorite).
>>  I have one general question also: How come Peldor cares so much
>>  for Belphanior?  I think that Belphanior would kill Peldor if
>>  it furthered his own ends.  Peldor is almost NG, while Belphanior
>>  hovers on CE.  It just doesn't seem to make sense, but relation-
>>  ships seldom do.
>>
>>  Jeff

  Good question.  I think I've kept their friendship alive and strong
over all these episodes because the _players_ always worked together
way back in the days when we actually played.  The two were good
friends, and so their characters became good friends as well.  I
guess, in game terms, it's just a friendship that maybe started out
of necessity, but became genuine as the years passed...a friendship
that goes beyond good & evil and right & wrong.



>>  I thought if Peldor was having trouble he would just allow
>>  Belphanior to use the hat of disguise so he could enter the city
>>  and help him eliminate the problem.The character whisper reminds
>>  me of an assassin I used to know he was silent very good with
>>  backstabbing and he used a wish so he was able to transform not
>>  just disguise his body so he would have all the persons strengths
>>  and weaknesses.Whisper also reminds me of Rillen2 in a way.
>>
>>  stdnt185

  Whisper...Rillen-2...both no-nonsense shadow warriors, indeed.



>>  Just finished reading story 246. Wonderful, Peldor is
>>  adventuring again, I can hardly wait to see what they'll find
>>  down in the sewers. I was also glad to see that Peldor finally
>>  got his rightful place among the other Guild Masters. I'm sure
>>  Belphanior would be of great help if Peldor decided to take
>>  over the guild himself. This 'Whisper' had better be a real
>>  hotshot to survive the combined force of Peldor and Belphanior.
>>  Peldor should also be able to help Belphanior get his revenge
>>  on those who offended him by tearing down his hideout.
>>  I have finally got access to WWW and FTP, and a couple of days
>>  ago I was at your homepage to look at the picture of the
>>  players. With the exception of Mongo, everyone looked almost
>>  exactly like I imagined they would. I had imagined that Mongo's
>>  player would look more, well, more like Mongo.  Anyway, it was
>>  funny to see how they really look since I feel like I know them
>>  a bit.
>>    Seeing Alindyar/Lyra again was also nice, although I never got
>>  episode 241 & 242 (probably because or server had some problems
>>  during easter, which caused it to eat most of my mail ).
>>   Keep up the good work, the Adventurer-saga is better than ever.
>>
>>    Stig

  The group picture was a big hit from day 1...



>>    Was looking through your fan mail, and noticed a few people
>>  reading earlier parts of the saga.  To me, one of the best ways
>>  to get a feel for the Adventurers is to read the entire saga
>>  from start to finish.  Seems to make the characters come to
>>  life, to coin a phrase...

  Yup, this is one thing that all fans agree on 100% - the best way
to read the stories is all at once!

>>    The drow staying at the Green Dragon....?  The possibilities
>>  here are nearly endless....Peldor and Bosco following the drow
>>  somewhere....or Peldor following the drow, Bosco following
>>  Peldor, and one of the other adventurers (maybe Belphanior...?)
>>  following Bosco to get to Peldor....
>>    In any event, I look forward to 247.
>>
>>  Tom



>>  I recently found your story while checking FTP sites and found
>>  your story while checking FTP sites for AD&D stuff.  I know that
>>  this is probably well after the last episode was concluded but I
>>  liked your story (so far, I am only up to episode 6).  If you
>>  plan to do anything more like this I hope it is as good or better
>>  that 'the adventurers'.  Thanks for many hours of great reading
>>  ahead of me.

(later)

>>  I thoroughly enjoy reading your series.  Reading the series re-
>>  awakened my love for frp games. I am only up to episode 7 but
>>  have the whole thing on my hard drive because I am leaving
>>  school and access to the wonderful thing called 'the net' for
>>  the military.  Keep up the good work if you are still writing
>>  stories.
>>
>>  Jason

  This is the kind of feedback that I like to hear...though you're
probably elsewhere by now, thanks for sending it.



>>  Very prolific writing lately, and all of very high quality.
>>  As a Braves fan, what do you think of the Grissom deal? As an
>>  Expos fan, I'm pretty happy with it, getting Tarasco, Kelly,
>>  the kid pitcher, and half of Kelly's salary ...
>>
>>  Vince

  Granted, the Braves had too many outfielders, and I'm glad that
Tony Tarasco finally got a chance to play full-time.  But, I don't
think that Grissom's living up to expectations thus far.  I guess
we need to re-examine these issues in October.
  Oops, am I ranting about baseball again?



>>  Reading the most recent of Peldor's exploits has brought a
>>  question to mind.  Haste is one of the most commonly used spells
>>  in your combats. Do you use the aging rule as per haste spell?
>>  I'm sure Peldor would be in his  fifties by now if his tattoes
>>  aged him each use. The others (with the exception of the elves)
>>  would also be getting past it.

  This is perhaps the one question I don't like.  For years, I've
basically ignored aging effects from hastes, wishes, etc.  I think
I should look back and tally the "extra years" sometime.

>>  I do love stuff with the thieves. Definately the most fun to
>>  read. Does they both carry loads of bits and pieces? Marbles,
>>  caltrops, pepper and  all those little things that can come in
>>  so useful.
>>    Regards,
>>
>>    Graham

  The little tricks mostly belong to Otto nowadays, though I'd keep
an eye on Bosco if I were you.  Let's see...come to think of it,
Peldor's more subtle than that, and Belphanior's more direct.  Keep
both eyes on Bosco.



>>  Hey, just thought I'd mention that it's time for Peldor to start
>>  using magic scrolls.  He was impressed that Peldor-2 did so,
>>  should have the ability to do so himself, and has two high-level
>>  mages owing him a favor.
>>
>>  Clifford

  He's already doing it...



>>  First things first...The stories have been great as always
>>  since I last dropped you a note.  They've sparked alot of
>>  creativity for a campaign I'm just starting.  (Greyhawk of
>>  course!)
>>
>>  Lance.



>>  I've been enjoying the change of emphasis in Adventurers
>>  recently, particularly the separate adventures and general
>>  character-building that goes on. Great work - keep it up!
>>
>>  Roger



  This next one pertains to episode #248...

>>  Good yarn, as usual.  Nice to know there are still a few things
>>  left in the universe that the Adventurers cant explain or have
>>  difficulty in handling....  :)
>>    It was also good to see Belphanior and Peldor back together
>>  again.  For the loose ends file...a future episode (when you
>>  have exhausted a plotline, or get writers block, or just plain
>>  feel like it) is, naturally, how did Belphanior get to the sewers.
>>  Last we knew, he was in the company of Rillen and crew...you
>>  realize, that with each episode you write, at least two or three
>>  more episode lines come out of it. (Hmm...is this perpetual
>>  motion....?  A patent maybe.....  :)  )

  This "perpetual motion" thing...a terrible problem, isn't it?  :)

>>  Another thought I had...when you publish an episode, do you have
>>  parts of the next one done already, or is the notes section just
>>  your "intended course of writing?"  I would imagine you already
>>  have a plot outline (at least mentally, anyway), but I was
>>  curious as to how much actual writing you have done 'ahead of
>>  time.'
>>
>>  Tom

  It varies...



>>  Wow.  That was incredible.  I get the feeling this is the
>>  start of some huge plot.  Nice to see the return of Belphanior.
>>
>>  Michael



  And more sewer-story comments/questions:

>>  who is Derek (the 'sewer worker' Peldor and Bosco met in the
>>  sewers) and what is he up to?
>>
>>  Tom

>>  ...Who is/was that dwarf that Peldor saw?  I'm thinking some
>>  'mage' in disguise...or something like that...
>>
>>  Patrick

  Hah!  Wouldn't you like to know?    :)



>>  Great episode! The best of as far back as I can remember (not
>>  that recent episodes haven't been execellent, this one jus takes
>>  the cake). Did you make those things up or are you using some
>>  TSR monster? They kind of reminded me of the doppleganger plant
>>  from the Ravenloft setting. I look forward to the MC write-up.
>>
>>  Eric

  I just made them up.  I don't even know their exact stats.



  Now for something about Ged:

>>  1- Nenya- Well a few things about her stick out.  She's pretty
>>  young for an elf, only 92 years old. No biggie.  With the
>>  tendency of the Adventurers to get involved with their henchmen/
>>  employees/whatever, I figure it's only a matter of time before
>>  Ged and Nenya get friendly even if Ged is not supposed to do
>>  such things as a priest of Boccob.  I think that would be one
>>  good reason Ged views her with both pride and jealousy, he's
>>  beginnning to consider her for other, more equal, possibilities.

  I forwarded this to Ashley, who promptly cleared this matter up...

>    Ged's feelings toward Nenya are, of course, purely platonic
>  in nature.

  And then he said:

>  Speaking of the pride/jealousy exhibited by Ged in general, not
>  just in regards to Nenya, perhaps it's time that he pay for that
>  attitude.  That is, maybe Boccob should be displeased by the
>  arrogance of his servant and punish him for it in some way.  Ged
>  could disappear for 40-50 episodes while atoning for his sins.
>
>  Ashley

  I, of course, used this idea recently...and we still don't know
how it will end up...



>>  After discovering the Adventurers web page, I was disappointed
>>  to discover that the full texts were not available, although you
>>  indicated that you'd mail them to interested folks. Well, I'm
>>  interested. Could you please e-mail me the books; all of them
>>  if is not too much trouble. Or perhaps you could direct me to
>>  somewhere that I could FTP or Web them myself.
>>
>>  Thanks
>>           --Rob

  They're not on the Web, but alternatives exist, as all of you no
doubt know by now.
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