Some Fan Mail...

Some Fan Mail from episodes #401-425...

Nice tributes!  :-)

Actually, it was interesting to put movie stars to the characters,
although I do have my own "pictures" of what they look like.


hey thomas,

the award ceremony was totally funny.  great job.


Wow, but it took a while to adjust to reading this: it seemed so
alien!  It was more of a joy to read the second time through, and
I think you did a good job (and I'm glad you included the note
about this not actually falling anywhere into the canon).


I loved the EGG awards. All the cameo appearences were funny.



Great series with the shapeshifter saga.  I was truly on the edge of
my seat with the many cliffhangers you threw at us.  I was kind of sad
to see Org go.  I kinda liked him.  Any friend of Peldor's is a friend
of mine.  I thought maybe Peldor or Bosco might use a wish to get him
back.  Oh well, we all gotta go sometime.........

On a cheerier note, I loved the EGG award show.  As usual, you picked
the perfect MC.  Maybe when Bosco retires, he will become a game show
host.  I think he would have been a perfect replacement for Richard

I'm looking forward to seeing more of all the Adventurers in the future.
Especially Victoria, Otto, and strangely enough, Eduardo (sp?).  By
golly, I think that young lad has the potential to carry the torch (no
olympics pun intended) for the next generation.  Ever think about doing
stories of some future adventures of the children of the Adventures....
that might just prove interesting.

Here are a couple of ideas for you.  I E-mailed you once before about a
story-line involving the sword of Torin the Crusader which Belph has.
Belph hinted that the sword may have been somehow connected with Torin's
life or soul.  Perhaps the sword somehow contains some remnants of his
soul (maybe Blackrazor didn't get all of it).  I would love to know more
about this sword.

Secondly, and here's a scary thought, maybe Rob could be transferred from
his current location to Tritherion's temple in Greyhawk and gain some
respectful standing in the city.  He can do more damage that way, heh, heh.

Anyway, enjoy that vacation.  You just missed the hurricane I hope.  L8er.


Keep up the good work. Especially the kidnapping and the shape-changer
story-lines kept me eagerly waiting for the next episode.


  I just want to add to the Adventurer's accolades.  Your stories have been
getting better and better.  I find myself thoroughly enjoying each new story
that appears in my mailbox.  I think increasing level of quality is not only
from the accumulation of writing experience you have developed, but also due
to the nature of the best of the mort recent story arcs:  they are Epic.
They involve great risk, sacrifice, and uncertain.  They test the party and
show their weaknesses.  And best of all, they force the adventurers to come
each others aid and pull together to defeat their foes.  I don't think there
is a much greater thrill than the joint vanquishing of oppressive enemies.
Keep up the good work.
  One thing you might want to try your hand at is a much longer story arc.
These several episode arc's are very nice, and you've shown you can get a
lot of effect out of them, but I think you could reach truly grand levels of
epicness if you lengthened the whole thing, adding the requisite sub-plots
and such.  I think you may be headed this way with your talk of the Greyhawk
Wars.  I fully encourage it.  To see the various characters off on their own
endeavors in support of the war coming together in some glorious battle
would be truly excellent.  Good luck. And thank you. I plan to keep reading
as long as you keep writing.


P. S.  By the way, all the stream of consciousness plot ideas you listed
sounded good.  I hope they see print.

A short note to say that I'm still reading your story and enjoying 
it, and have recently started Dming after playing ADND for many 
years.  Reading the Adventurers has sparked my imagination and given 
me many ideas to use in my own campaign.  Keep it up.

By the way, what's it like over there at the moment with the Olympics 
only a whisker away?  Hectic?  Boring?  Jingoistic?

Have fun.


TM>             CDIV.  Night of a Thousand Stars (part II)

Classic!  Wonderful!  This refers to the 385+ storyline and the awards.  I
don't know at what rate you turned these out, but Mr. Reliable who
moderates r.g.f.a posted them all over the space of about 2 days.  I think
it is time to request addition to your ever-growing mailing list.

You had me 1/2 conviced she's a vampire, and 1/2 convinced she's just
playing mind games, and this episode resolved the issue definitively --
both ways.  Sigh.

  TM> Belphanior:  (to Victoria)  That's what I look like when I'm _really_
  TM>   pissed.
  TM> Victoria:  You look sexy when you're angry.
  TM> Belphanior:  Oh.

  TM> Belphanior:  (to Victoria)  Now that was another good battle...
  TM> Victoria:  It looks that way.  Let's go back there someday.
  TM> Belphanior:

  TM> Nerof:  Victoria...
  TM> crystal ball:  (shows the black-tressed warrior-woman doing what she
  TM>   does best)
  TM> Victoria:  (to Belphanior)  Actually, battle isn't what I do _best_.

  TM> Victoria:  Very instructive.
  TM> Otto:  (from the audience)  Urp!
  TM> Victoria:  (giggles)

  TM> Victoria:  (gives Belphanior's arm a playful pinch)
  TM> Belphanior:  Ow...!

You have *got* to be setting something up (the mood, anyway, even if the
actual events at the awards have no place in "the real story") with all

  TM> Derider Fanshaen.........................................Renee Russo
  TM> Org Nenshen, RIP...........................................Ed Harris
  TM> Nerof Gasgal..............................................James Caan

Good choices.

  TM> Whisper/Wendell.......................................George Clooney

Clooney!?  Hmmm.  Perhaps I have to watch Dusk til Dawn.

  TM> Rary........................................................Rip Torn


My thanks for all 400+ and my hopes for at least 400 more.

Well, I saw your stories on, and as they seemed
interesting, I visited the FTP site and grabbed the lot.

I _definitely_ don't regret taking the time to do that!
Man, they're really great.... I've read books 1 - 15 in about a week
and I'm up to a pace where I can't read faster without missing any
important parts of it all.

Originally, I was going to say that I liked Epic I better, but after
reading book 15 I honestly can't. That one was unbelievably good!
I was totally hooked and not even an earthquake could have moved me
from the screen - if the power would've went out, I'd quickly research
fusion power, or something! Perhaps it was just that they didn't seem
totally invurnerable, which has often been the case before.

Another thing I like very much is the parts that I guess the ol' evil
empire DOESN'T like - ie the fact that "famous" people appear from
time to time (like Bigby, Tenser and the rest of the "biggies") - even
though I don't have any experience with Greyhawk, at least their names
feature prominently in the 2ed spell lists... It's a real shame that
most Greyhawk stuff is out of print - if I could get my hands on
some of it, another campaign would definitely be added to the several
ones being played here. While I'm at it, I liked the stuff with Orcus

About the characters, my favourite (of course, I feel inclined to say)
is Belphanior - I've always liked the more shady "heros" in all
sorts of books, movies, rpgs, etc - closely followed by Bosco (I _also_
like the little pests/thieves - my DL favourites are Raistlin
and Tas, in that order) (if I had written this message earlier,
this space would (of course) have been occupied by Peldor).

Well, what else is there to say, apart that I'm itching to move on to
book 16, and that you're apparantly some sort of genius or something?
Keep up the good work! =)


The  sewer/shapeshifter/snirfivlin(sp?)/Peldor dying series is quite 
possibly your best yet. I was just dying to find out what was going to 
happen next. The stories were great individually and as a whole. 
I have recently re-read all the episodes #1-400 and have come to a 
conclusion. You really, really need to find a way to publish this stuff. To 
me it is a shame that people in the public at large don't have access to 
these great stories. Persons without net access, yes there are still people 
out there without it, will not have a chance to read the work of one of the 
best young fantasy writers, namely you. My favorite writers are, in order, 
Thomas Miller, Bob Salvatore, Troy Denning (I just read his Twilight Giants 
trilogy and it was great). Your stories have been a great inspiration in my 
roleplaying as well as my gamemastering. I really think there is a large 
untapped audience out there for your stories. If I could help you with 
getting these stories out to the public in any way just let me know. The 
stories are way to good not to let the world at large see them. Thank you 
for all your hard work in creating them and keep up the good work, they are 


Hiya Thomas!

    The sewer story was a wonderful piece of work. Characters aside, I
     liked the way you split the party into small groups of one or two
     people. This gave the character interaction a more personal feel
     (especially when members thought the others had died). It also allows
     the swapping between scenes to break up the storyline, which also
     intensifed its excitement at the same time. Excellent writing style.

     The splits also made certain characters use the full extent of their
     own limited (but specialised) skills and powers. Things get tough when
     you're by yourself.

     I loved the way you removed Nightfang from Peldor, thus allowing him
     to die. Good idea. It's a shame that Org has died, but it does open
     the avenue for a major thieves guild promotion war, whether it be
     political or physical remains to be seen. An assassination attempt at
     Peldor's wedding party could be interesting. "Who posioned the wedding
     cake... Beeelarggg"

     The Adventures Awards were fun. I was almost pissing myself with
     laughter at some points. Aldinyar being ESP'ed by the god for example.
     I had to seriously restrain myself to prevent being caught by my
     manager. I think he's still looking at me strangely now...

TM>  Glad you liked it!  I think it's a cinch to win best "plotline"
TM>  next year...

     Now onto the latest Hellgate escapade. I know that you've probably
     already been bombed with this enquiry by a dozen others, but are those
     poor adventurers the same example characters in the old DMG? I love em
     anyway. I take it as read that Belph is using them as experimental
     rats for his castle defenses.

     I will be interested to see if he will use them compasionately and
     only trick, trap and scare the poor star-struck fools (remembering
     what it was like when he was young and inexperienced), or whether he
     will mercylessly slaughter the whole lot. I hope that he will treat
     them gently as he is supposed to be free from the evil tendancies of
     his ex-eye. It'll all be an amusing diversion anyway...

     It could also be a good time to confirm/reveal that Victoria is really
     a vampire. It's dusk. Otto sneaks down a corridor chuckling to himself
     at the last trick played on the saps, when he realises that the
     "princess" has entered Victoria's bedroom. With an "Oh Fuck!" he
     quickly investigates to warn Belphanior's girlfriend only to find her
     draining the life fluids from the estwhile thief. Great character
     personality clash sure to happen!

     Oh, don't worry about ascii castles. I can't get web access here and
     any kind of map is better than none. Oh a question for you - why was
     the gate house ruined? The whole castle was built less that a year
     ago. Is it to exaggerate the spooky feel of the place?

TM>  Remember, he built it magically (I didn't explicitly state that,
TM>  but if you read between the lines you'll see) so it's not exactly
TM>  a brand-new castle.
TM>  Also for the spooky effect.   :)

     Thanks for all your hard work. Keep churning them out!


You know, most people who begin playing RPGs start off with characters doing
just this sort of thing: wandering about doing "good." The Adventurer's did
the same on occassion (okay, Belphanior and Peldor at least were in it for
themselves mostly), but usually had other motives than just "doing good for
the sake of it". Now I find these bands of do-gooders to be rather annoying
for the most part: I hope the do-gooders get blasted to smithereenes.

Assuming these guys to be of at least moderate experience levels, I was
somewhat worried about them taking Belphanior unawares, but seeing Eduardo
running off to tell Belphanior put my mind at ease.

Hey, Belphanior still has the bulk of his "Earth Weapons", right? I seem to
remember a shotgun or two, maybe a handgun, and plenty of dynomite! The
dynomite at least should be fun: just toss a couple of sticks with a lit
fuse at their feet, and they won't have any idea of what they are, so they
probably would just stare at them, or even pick one of them up. There's a
good potential for major loss of limbs here ;-).

Ah, and Victoria is probably at the castle too. Wow, goosebumps in the middle
of a 89+ degree room.


PS Wow, I've developed quite a lot of bloodlust: it _must_ be the heat.

Glad to hear you are ok after the explosion.  I was afraid you might have 
wandered down there and gotten hurt.

I loved the adventure with the shapeshifters!  If it didn't top mongo's trip
to thunderdelve I don't know what will. 

I hope peldor becomes head of the of the guild.  He may be in trouble 
if a different person is put in charge. 

The Egg awards was well worth the wait!  Does this mean we will have another
Egg awards next year?

The quest seems to be starting off well.  I think this could lead to some
interesting choices for Belphanior and his associates. Will they kill 
all the adventurers off or let some of them live to spread the word?  I hope
to see Razor Charlie and Eduardo get some time in this adventure. 

How do you see the furture of Helgate?  Word will spread about Belphanior's 
keep.  Either due to the high death toll or from whatever $$$ is taking out
of there or what has been lost ($$$) by those dead adventurers.  Might 
Belphanior and his associates take some steps to keep out adventurers?  

Perhaps some ruse, He could advertise for adventurers then send them out to 
their deaths. He could also send them out to suit some purpose he might have.  
Another ruse could be a bogus map of the place.  It would basically seem 
correct, but, would lead the would be adventures into a trap. A good idea for
a trap would be a teleportation trap. Send those bad boys say into the sea
of dust or some other place which will keep them away for some time. The old
naked teleportation from S1 (Tomb of Horrors) is a find idea. This way they
still live, and, they give belphanior their possessions.

Also, how strong does Hellgate appear to be?  What keeps some nearby lord from
coming and taking over the place?  All the recent activities may make it 
attractive to some ambitious person.  Perhaps they should seek out alliances
with nearby lords to prevent such a thing. Otto may prefer to set two nearby
lords to fighting each other. 

Last bit, I was wondering if "New" members of the Nine Adventures was actually
Belphanior or his crew... :)


Thomas -

Finally!  It took about 3 months of spare time but I've finally finished 
all 409 (as of today) episodes of the adventurers.  Just sorta stumbled 
onto them in a newsgroup ("What kind of things do people post to these
groups?" - now I know!).

Needless to say, I would never have read 409 episodes if I hadn't found
them engrossing, entertaining and enlightening (!?!).  Therefore I would
just love to be added to your mailing list.

Thanks for all your hard work,


TM>  My choice of names for the Co. of Nine was remarked on by many...

Well, THAT's a group of names I never expected to see again! Been
looting your old DMG? =) I remember actually having a few NPC's
named after them myself when I played AD&D .. this one looks like
it'll be a great storyline!


> The Company of Nine:

I remember these guys. It's been a while.
It really made me laugh to see them again, along with a lot of sniping
I don't seem to remember...  :)


You've been reading your 1st Edition DMG again, I see...  This is a nice 
touch. :-)

Wanted to tell you that the shapechangers was an _excellant_ storyline.
Good to Peldor back in action!

This upcoming Belphanior line promises to be good.  It's and event 
that is bound to happen.  

I love the names Gutboy Barrelhouse, Balto, etc...They bring back
good memories from the DMG.  If I remember correctly, the A's were
trying to kill the B's =) (Arlinni, Arkan etc.. vs Balto and co)

Keep up the stories!


I think the "Company of nine" (no relation) is already in use
by T$R in their "Planscape (tm)" setting. Mebbe you should
uh, change the name, or something? I remember them harassing
various web sights early last year. You might have been one,
I've forgotten.

TM>  An unfortunate and unintentional coincidence...oh well...

Very funny, using one of the DMG 1 "example parties" as your group.
Convenient, too...



I see you've been reading the combat examples in the DMG.  I kind of liked
those guys, maybe they won't die.  Perhaps just a good scare.

Keep up the good work,


P.S.  No, I don't really think that Belph will let them off so easily.

TM>  Don't count on it.

> The Company of Nine:

Aren't these guys the ones from the various "sample" combats and "sample"  
adventures in the various printings of the DMG ?   Gutboy, Blastum, Barjin and  
Balto seem awfully familiar....


I can't _believe_ you dragged those folks out of the 1st edition DMG!  I 
can't wait to see where this goes...


YES, YES YES! Just the thing I would do to a gaming group, feed a wee 
bit of misinformation, walla...Good hero's chopping down wrong tree,
end up running for lives.  Those that survive the assult. *evil grin*
I like the plotline (as you can tell).

By the way.... THANKS for writing these very enjoyable stories.  I
check my email just to see if a new story has arrived.


welcome back thomas,
Just two things:
   Firstly I just checked out your "copyright" notice at the top of 
your stories, you have pretty much copyrighted everything you have done 
in the last 5 years. I don't know if you are aware of this, but T$R's 
encyclopedia of magic has an exact descreption of blackrazor in it, 
what's the story, or am I behind the times??
   Secondly, I agree with your assessment of the games. It is 
without a doubt the worst fuck up I have ever seen in  a sporting event. 
Athletes have MISSED their events, how the fuck can that happen??? I'd 
hate to say it man, but whatever Sydney does in the 2000, it's going to 
look an absolute shitload better. The only good thing has been the 
excellent camera work!!

   sorry for griping on, keep up the good stories


Oh my....

Gutboy, Arlani, Balto...
1st edition DMG, right? Must be..
If so, one of these guys should have a Horn of Blasting. =) (Gutboy,
if I remember my DMG)
Let's see what Belphanior thinks of some dwarf bringing his
castle walls down when things get sticky. *chuckle*

This many folks... you'd think they'd have more priestly power...
with only one, poor Arkayne will be reduced to naught but a
portable medkit. (The problem with most d&d games... few
folks want to be priests it seems)

Things don't look too good for the Company of Nine, I might
add. Belphanior is not the type to build non-lethal traps... and
he's had lots of time to do it. 8)  Methinks their ranks shall
be thinned soon enough.. ('Sides... nine is just too unwieldly
a number.)

  It is interesting to note that, though dividing three ways, rather
  then just two, Belphanior is now just as accomplished a mage as
  This seems somehow wrong to me. Not only does B rarely do
  the 'mage' thing... (He's a horrible one for not using resources.
  He's little more then a trumped up fighter most of the time. And
  a poor one at that, relying exclusively on his sword's magic
  most of the time (We saw this clearly when fighting the shapeshifters...
  he no longer got the 'free' healing and subsequently fared poorly
  due to his usual fighting tactics.))
  But Ged spends most of his time doing it, yet has accomplished
  barely anything in comparison.

 It also shows the writer's tendency to focus on certain
 characters. =) Poor Ged just doesn't get the adventuring
 opportunities any more. Teach him to build a castle... oh
  wait... Belph has one too now...

It's about time to pass the torch, it seems... Ged and Rillen and
the drow are already pseudo-retired. Peldor is moving in quick
(most certainly if he becomes Head Guildmaster)
Belphanior... uh... well, who knows where that's going.
So we just need to deal with Mongo and Belph.
We still need at least one death... I'd vote for Mongo... but only
if it something so incredibly heroic and far-reaching that he
becomes an instant legend. =)  (It would have to be, I'm sure,
since the guy is virtually unkillable at the moment.)
I'd rather see Belph die, but hey, Mongo's would make for
a better story.
As for B... hmm... perhaps there should be one who just
'disappears'.... without a trace. Much more mystery, and
options then. =)

Then the table would be set for Round II, with the current
Adventurers merely guest stars (like all those high powered
mages and assissins from Greyhawk/and the current king
of Thunderdelve)

Aw well.. Keep up the wonderful work


hey thomas,

good story so far and i can't wait to see some of these hoseheads get wasted...

i like the mentality of the low level guys, it really fits with how they'd
think.  especially gutboy's comment about the trap.  i've even heard high
level characters utter such things and learn to regret it later.  very cool.

here's some comments and typos:

>+  The Company of Nine (unwanted guests):                           +
>+                                                                   +
>+  Abner          5th level human magic-user                   (LN) +
>+  Aggro the Axe  4th level human fighter                      (CG) +
>+  Arkayn         4th level human cleric                       (LG) +
>+  Arlanni        2nd level human female thief                  (N) +
>+  Balto          1st level human monk                         (LN) +
>+  Barjin         4th/5th level half-elven fighter/magic-user   (N) +
>+  Gutboy Barrelhouse  5th level dwarven fighter               (CN) +
>+  Blastum        4th level human magic-user                   (CN) +
>+  Sarnath        5th level human magic-user                   (NE) +

is there any particular reason you are using the 'old' naming style instead of
warrior, wizard, priest, etc.?

TM>  It goes along with the choice of names...    :)

  TM> Abner		human		male		magic-user
  TM> Aggro the Axe	human		male		fighter
  TM> Arkayn		human		male		cleric
  TM> Arlanni		human		female		thief
  TM> Balto		human		male		monk
  TM> Barjin		half-elf	male		fighter/magic-user
  TM> Gutboy Barrelhouse  dwarf	male		fighter
  TM> Blastum		human		male		magic-user
  TM> Sarnath		?		male		magic-user

Ha!  I thought I'd never see those names again.  Classic.

and are you sure that sarnath is human and not drow elf?

matt h.

TM>  Pretty sure...


 I am reminded of a short story, written not long after AD&D first took off
in popularity.  An old DragonTales magazine had a story about a raid on a
wizard's tower.  Supposed to be nigh impregnible, except for one night a
year when the wizard 'slept'.  It was set up as a big game for the wizard,
a test for those looking for the wizard's treasures.  The castle reminds me
of the tower.  Belphanior doesnt care who tries to come get him.  Hell, one
might imagine him HIRING anybody that actually made it to see him


I am under the impression that he knows exactly where they are and is
using the Book of the Beasts to weaken and kill most of them before he
makes his appearance.


it's good to see that real fear and self preservation is showing in these
guys.  after all there are some who are truly inexperienced: balto is 1st
level and arlanni is only 2nd.

matt h.

Hah! Still clueless as ever, but the group in general is now acting
more cautious, and beginning to have doubts, which shows they aren't
stupid. There is hope that some may survive.

>notes:     I'm enjoying this story arc, and I'll have you know that
>  some of the Company of Nine are kinda growing on me...

Well, I still like the thief, as well as Arkaine. Sarnath is too mysterious
for me to feel much compassion for. There's no rule that says you have to
kill all but one of the party. It'd kind of make sense, and show that these
guys aren't the typical, stupid, fight to the death tho' we have no chance
thugs that Belphanior frequently encounters.


I like the way the group is gradually forming more and more doubts about
their abilities against Belphanior, and the wisdom of this "mission." It'd
be fun to see the survivors turn tail and run without ever encountering

>iron statue:  (standing in the stairway, at the landing onto the second
>  floor, it blocks the way)

Hello, Angus. Now I just can't picture this group surviving an encounter
with Angus if a troll almost kicked their collective butts. I suspect that
they'll quickly opt to flee (back upstairs?) rather than fight.

You know, now that the Adventure's are at such high levels, its nice to
kick back and watch a low to mid level party work. It also shows that
heroes really are made from a cut above others: the Adventurer's had much
better success at the same level doing equally difficult tasks.


>  So, having done that, what do you think were the highs and
>lows of the stories thus far?  (you're in a unique position,
>having read them all in a relatively short period of time)

My favorite storyline so far has been the most recent sewer/shapeshifter
adventures.  In addition to being great stories they introduce a massive
amount of loose ends (Who will be the next Guildmaster?  What will change
about Peldor's life now that things are far less stable?), new Characters
(all those scheming Quartermasters, for example) and new possibilities (what
else is underneath Greyhawk besides Gnomes and Kuo-Toa?).

I loved the Tarrasque episode.  As the adventurers get more and more
powerful, enemies that can challenge the combined might of all of them are
fewer and farther between so it was really neat to see _one_ creature
threaten them.

I liked the Slaver's adventures (Modules A1-A4) since long long ago I had
played those same adventures and it was great to see how others tackled the
same obstacles.

Finally (although to be honest I have really liked all the stories), I
appreciate the earliest stories including when the adventurers first met.  I
think the uncertaintly (who _are_ these freaks?) and discovery (a _drow_?)
were a lot of fun.

As far as lows go, I was initially unhappy with the adventures on Earth.  I
thought it was a bit cheesy at first but by the time I got to the end I was
really enjoying them.  I was wondering, though, why didn't Paula get
nominated for an EGG as best Child?  ;-)

Also, I am one of those few, apparently that isn't thrilled with Helgate.
It's getting better, especially these brash-young-soon-to-be-mince-meat
adventurers trying to oust Belphanior.  I guess it's because I haven't read
that many westerns.

Anyway, gotta run!  Thanks for adding me to the list!


I think this story arc is great.  When I first played AD&D(1st Ed) about
15 years ago, one of our first adventures was to destroy the evil
wizard and his band(20) of kobolds.  I think the wizard was around
9th level and we were 2nd thru 4th.  I'm not sure these guys stand
a chance.



Well, after reading several intermittently received episodes of your
stories in R.G.F.A, I finally decided to go check that website. ~8MB
later, here I am, newly enlightened regarding all those in jokes which
I missed before :)  Great stuff!  Could you please add me to the ever
growing mailing list, since my newsfeed is rather flaky.  For instance,
we got about a dozen copies of episode 406, but the ones after that
haven't arrived yet (read them on DPM's web site)  Of course, now that
I've read it all, it's time for the obligatory hopeful (helpful?)
comments and suggestions! :)

First off, while it's good to know that *someone* is finally going to
be using that spare(!?!) +6 longsword of Mongo's, I was rather hoping
that Peldor would commission the drow to create an individually 
tailored magical weapon for him, perhaps using that adamantite meteorite
for material.  I'd still like to see *someone* create a magical weapon
(theoretically, with all of them out there, it should happen quite
frequently) with all the resultant quests for materials, advice, perhaps
the proper forge/smith/time of year, whatever.  As for other candidates
for new weapons, well, the drow don't seem too interested, Mongo, Ged,
and Belphanior are well in hand, Peldor just got a new sword...*sigh*
ah well, maybe something will happen to Blackrazor and Bephanior will
feel the need to replace it...Or, on a related note, all those dead
dragons in the party's past, and no one with a desire to produce dragon
scale mail, heh.

I'm enjoying the newbies' trek through Belphanior's keep; I suppose it's
a good thing the main party never went up agains the likes of a Belphanior
when they were inexperienced...Perhaps, before it's too late, one of the
spellcasters could be a wild mage, to throw some greater than expected
chaos into the fray?  I'd also love to hear more about Eduardo and Felicia;
maybe those two should get together sometime...


Hey Thomas,

Keep up the excellent work.  I recently got all the episodes at one of 
the Ftp sites. I'm around episode 160 right now.  I found it hard to get 
them because I don't have Gnu zip and that was the only way they  were 
collected so I had to get each one individually.  That was really time 
consuming.  So I have made a pkzip of all the stories up to date.  It's 
rather large so I think I'll cut it down into 100 episode bites.  If you 
would like these for your webpage or the ftp sites let me know.  I don't 
have a webpage of my own yet so cannot put them there.

Now for the story praise.

Incredible.  That's what the last plot line was.  The shapechangers were 
great.  The raid on Belphanior's castle is wonderful as well.  Although I 
do have one question.  Is Sarnath really Belphanior???  It just sees like 
something he would do, kill a party member and replace him.  That would 
definitely be a Belphanior move.

Keep up the great work



I think that this current story line is pretty dang cool.  It could be
a episode from the Adventurers early days, although they never faced
anyone this deadly compared to their levels.  Gutboy could be Mongo
himself at an early age.  

I can't wait to see what happens when Angus begins whooping on them.
It would also be a nice time for the wispy thing to show up again,
I can just see it playing havok with the spell casters.

Belph has had some time to figure out how to use the stuff he got
from Earth, opening a door to get shotgun blast in the face would
be quite a surprise!

Keep up the great stories!


Dear Thomas,

   Hi!  I've been reading The Adventurers for years now (before episode 100),
and I don't think I've ever laughed so hard as when I saw the Company of Nine!
I don't know where Sarnath came from, but I remember the rest (obviously they
patched up their differences).  This is definitely the "worst" thing you've
done since Alindyar's Bigby's-Hand rod and Kiel's Magic Compass.  Anyway, your
stories are still awesome.  Thank you for continuing to write them!  

- Craig

I'm very disappointed that the adventurers didn't even consider the
possibility of the murals etc being autobiographical. After all, they
do know that Belph's an egotist.


Kill most of them!  I tend to like them, but it's nice to see what can go
wrong to a group of adventurers, too stupid to leave.


Actually I think the story is kinda dragging.  They
just keep wandering this mostly empty castle, occassionally getting wasted
in gruesome fashion.  Bel really needs to show up.  The suspense isn't killing
me, it's killing the story.


TM>  Funny you should mention that - right as things got the most
TM>  boring (and confusing) Belphanior appeared.  This in 417, which
TM>  you have by now.
TM>  I sensed the slowness...actually it kinda works to demoralize
TM>  the intruders.  Think about it:  they're out to kill this warlock,
TM>  but all that they can do (no matter how hard they try) is roam a
TM>  bunch of empty passages, fight the occasional monster, and lose a
TM>  party member now and than.  And right when this pattern gets really
TM>  bad, they find a way out...and get delayed just long enough for
TM>  their quarry to show up.
TM>  This may make more sense after you've read 417.

I've really enjoyed this last little adventure (of the Company of
Nine, er, Eight, er, ). Call me a sucker for slim female thieves
(hint), but I hope at least one or two get away (or perhaps that should
be, allowed to get away). I also hope at least Arkayn realises his
mistake in so readily assuming the evil of "the evil warlock" (though
whether he lives to reflect upon that mistake is solely at the
discretion of a certain irritated elf).

(looking forward to finding out what the surprise is)


I just had to say, now, that Victoria's little secret was
quite a shocker! In no way at all did I think her secret
was that she's a demon! Whoo whoo!

So you saved Arlanni afterall! I had thought the majority
voted for Arkayne, but with a demon in the battle, there's
no way the priest could have survived (and the story still
make sense). I wondered why he so clearly saw evil over
towards Belpanior and company, but was thinking it might
be Razor Charlie. Heh, silly me.

Good story-line (that's two in a row).


Hi Thomas, the castle story was very nice. I tried to make a set
of maps but was not very successful with the information given
in the story.

> next:      Belphanior learns a lot about Victoria

I hope we learn as well! When Arkayn detected evil at Belphanior's
party, I thought it was his intelligent sword.

> priestess:  You're lucky, girl.  The gods have granted you a second
>   chance at life, and not many people get that.
> Arlanni: ....

How will Arlanni use her second chance at life? Is she giving up
adventuring or looking for another party to join? Plotting revenge
on Victoria perhaps? Did she gain any XP from this adventure?


Sad to see the company of nine die, but I'm sure you can find
a way to bring them back if you have to :)

I always knew Victoria was at least an alu-demon, but it surprises
me a little that no-one suspected. Will Belphanior still love her?
What will the rest of the Adventurers think?


Wow! From the start of this episode, I could tell something was up
with Victoria, but that was a major surprise...


I'm really enjoying the storyline. 

Victoria..all I can say is wow!

Was this motivated by how cool it would be to have a story
named "Victoria's Secret"?


Hmmm, I guessed the survivor, and I'm happy to see more of the Victoria mystery is being given light. *grin*  Thanks for writing these stories!


> Belphanior:  (frowns)

Thanks. :)

And the surprise - wow! It gives a whole new meaning to the term
Victoria's Secrets. :) 



Just a quick note to say I quite enjoyed the latest set of episodes 
featuring the Company of Nine (now 1 I guess :-)). I've forgotten who 
Sarquay was though (an ex-slaver perhaps?). I did grow somewhat attached 
to Arlanni so was glad to see her live at the end. I remember the rest of 
the party from the DMG1 and was pleasantly surprised to see them show up 
here. The whole storyline was definitely a good 'followup' to the sewer
adventures being a lot fresher and lighter in tone. Thank you!

Also, the final battle in 418 was very surprising with Victoria's alter 
ego revealed. I doubt if Belphanior will look at her in the same way 
again after that(!) I think the Company was pretty damn lucky to survive 
as long as they did in that battle, and I bet Otto was more than a 
little pissed off at the end :-)



        I had been thinking she was a succubus. I guess that's pretty close. 
I like the chemistry between Belphanior and her. I'd imagine Belph is 
considering the advantages and disadvantages of being a vampire at this very 
moment. Though it has a great upside, immortality, immunity to weapons, 
special powers; it has a significant downside, no sunlight, running water, 
and most of all, goody goodies from all over tend to  seek out and destroy 
vampires with regularity. Ged for example, could you imagine what 
Lightbringer would say!?!? I personally hope Belph and Victoria's 
relationship works out. They could be together for several hundred years 
easily with one being immortal and the other an elf, pretty much immortal. 
But, I also hope Belph doesn't succumb to the urge to become a vampire. It 
would limit him way too much.
        This mini-series was excellent, your writing just gets better and 
better. I have loved all your stories from #1 till now. Thank you for 
continuing to write them.

Lord Arcane


I for one think that you've done an excellent job of avoiding the 
vampire cliches, and the expository walk of Belphanior and Victoria 
worked nicely to dispel some potential cheesyness.  She promises to be 
as interesting a character as any of the hitherto regulars.  Keep up 
the good work.


Not bad. I had her pegged as a Succubus, myself, or possibly an Erinyes,
figuring you'd steer clear of the vampire model. 

In the former case, she would have been either an agent of Orcus, or (more
interesting) of one of his rivals. One of the nice things about dealing with
CEs: if you really piss one of them off, you get a tough enemy but also some
quiet friends in low places who will look out for you in case you become
useful again in future. Especially if you lack good tendencies and thus are
not seen as a potential threat to them down the road.

As an Erinyes, it's the same principle...having defeated a Balor and
grievously and permanently wounded it makes one a hero of sorts to the Blood
War. So a Pit-Fiend who really hated Erik [is he now "Erik the half-a-Balor"? 
:D  ] sends a quiet agent to keep tabs on B. and act as advance waring if the
Tanar'ri try anything again. Depending on their needs at the time, the
Ba'atezu may wish to block such moves.

Still, the vampire angle was handled reasonably well, thugh your version seems
very "humanized" in its characteristics and needs.

>Q:  Why is she hanging around Belphanior?
>A:  Because she likes him.

Figures. Only Belphanior could be cool enough for this...

>Q:  Why isn't Belphanior completely revolted by her now that he
>    knows her true nature?
>A:  Belphanior doesn't exactly think like you and me.

I'm not sure whether or not I should be worried, but I pretty much grok where
he's coming from on this issue.


Lots of stuff from Ravenloft for vampires. Cool :-)
Great story, funny (if expected) reaction by Belphanior.


Belphanior and Victoria seem an excellent match, and I love the
twists and surprises. Great work! :)


I really enjoyed the Belphanior / Party of Nine series.



I must say - electrifying! I never guessed about Victoria, but looking
back I should have had a clue. It all fits, and it seems to work so well
with Belphanior being the guy he is. 

Keep up the good work.


I just finished reading the Adventurers for the 2nd time (starting
from 1 on up to 420, speed reading is your friend.. :).  You certainly
have matured as a writer, especially with recent storylines.  The
latest storylines have been great!

Since you've always been open to ideas, I thought I'd drop a few that
bounced around in my head during my read.

If you need a nasty villain to come back to haunt the Adventurers, you
have two liches that haven't been killed off (the one summoned by the
Trumpet of Doom in the Bone March/Humanoid army storyline, and the
Suel lich got away).  I think the Suel lich would be a good one for a
Ged/Nenya and crowd based storyline, with the lich wanting to retrieve
a few items that it considers its own.  The other lich would be
another Belphanior line (with some interesting mixes introduced given
Victoria's vampire status).  I'd really like to see Belphanior
increase his wizard abilities, since it seems he is focussing more and
more on them.  Having something happen in which he must find and take
out that lich would be a good means to boost his intelligence/mage
abilities.  And what would B be like if he were to discover the secret
of gaining lichdom?  (Way far future story idea...)

I'm looking forward to the day when Mongo finally estabilishes his own
stronghold.  Hmm, his armor could maybe quest him into something,
which would lead him into establishing a stronghold on borderlands
between someplace evil and someplace good.

Finally, I had some ideas about Peldor, but they are pretty extreme.
Peldor is actually a recovering demigod.  I say recovering, because
for centuries, he and a few others were trapped not unlike the ones
Zagig contained.  Remember the four statues that were in the big
treasure hall in the buried Suel city?  One was of a rogue, but was
collapsed, and missing its head.  If they head had been there, the
others would have seen it as Peldor's.  The ancient Suel captured 4
minor demigods of some minor people when they annihilated them in an
expansion (I am remembering the Suel as a very aggressive and warlike
people before the Invoked Devastation/Rain of Colourless Fire,
right?).  When the Suel had almost completely wiped out these people,
they managed to capture the vastly weakened demigods that they
worshipped.  They used the captured entities as some kind of magical
energy source for a while, then they practically were wiped out in the
war with the Baklunish.  In the meantime, the demigods, starved of
worshippers and drained of energy, eventually died of neglect as the
Suel city they were kept in was buried and forgotten.  Except one, the
god of thievery, who before being captured, managed to hide a bit of
energy.  Not much, but enough to free him in time.  The trick was to
be very subtle.  In order to disguise the escape attempt, the energy
was either very, very weakly attacking the bounds, or if the Suel were
actively draining the demigod, the energy could be used more actively.
If the Suel hadn't been nearly destroyed, 'Peldor' would have been
freed much sooner.  But the Suel were destroyed.  But the entity
didn't know that.  So it maintained its slow attempts at freedom.  It
was a god, time was not so important.  Until, finally, it had weakened
to the point that it was almost dead.  Using the last burst of energy,
it freed itself, but was almost killed in the process.  In a desparate
attempt to save itself, it took on flesh, and the Peldor we know and
love was 'born'.  As he has been advancing in level, he has been
slowly recovering power.  All memory of what he had been has been
wiped out by the near 'death', except, of course, for his attitude.
Some things that might indicate to others (in particular the spell
casters) that all isn't as it seems would be the fact that he doesn't
age from all the hasting he's done over the years.  Another, more
subtle one, would be his scroll use.  As in, he never fails.
Eventually, he'd acquire enough power to retake his rightful place
with the other gods.  

Wow.  That's not only long, but probably really disjoint.  Oh, well.
I just like the idea of Peldor being some kind of god 'slumming' as it
were.  Something that could be really amusing would be Belphanior
bringing Victoria with him to the wedding (she'd be there for the
evening reception, as long as Ged didn't show up armed with
Lightbringer), and her recognizing Peldor, by name and face.  Only as
someone she'd known a few hundred years ago.  :)

Just to bounce around some more, when is the next Adventurer's stats
coming out?  And will Belphanior ever manage to id the various swords
and things he's accumulated?

Okay, enough confusing banter.  Thanks for continuing to produce one
of the most entertaining serials I've ever read.


The recent sewer/shapeshifter story arc was easily the best you
have written yet.



Thomas --

  I've been reading your Adventurers stories on r.g.f.a for some months now,
and I've been increasingly impressed!  The shapechangers story was awesome
even though I guessed that the guildmaster was one of them from the way he
insisted on _his_ maps, and no companions, and no word getting around.
  I laughed out loud when I saw the names of the company of nine...eight..., and the way that their adventures in Belph's castle all of a
sudden sounded like the dungeon in the old PHB.  
Genius!  They were very well-described too.  So do you have any plans for 
Arlanni, seeing as Belph decided to show her mercy?  Perhaps she'll 
forgive Belph for saving her, but have it in for Victoria?
  Finally I can't say that I'm too surprised that Victoria's secret :-) was
that she was a fangface.  Something about the way you described her made
me think that she was.  Something about pale skin, black hair, coolly 
  Anyway, this fan mail is long overdue, but keep up the good work!  I've 
enjoyed every story (except for a couple of the lighter ones) since I 
started reading at #150 or so.

The Amorphous Mass 

hey thomas,

nice cheery/lively episode.  it really shows the contrast between ged's
and belphanior's castles and the surrounding atmosphere.


hey thomas,

it's good to see rillen again.


The stories are excellent, though.  I always enjoy a good Belphanior story,
and was delighted when Victoria turned out to be a vampire.  The perfect
match for Belphanior.  It is also going to be nice to see Rillen and Songa
kicking butt on some evil wizards.  Ah, young love. :-)


I've just recieved and read episode 423. Unfortunately I didn't
realise that I hadn't read episode 422. Mayhaps you were out at a stag
     night and forgot to post it? Its been nice to see Rillen again. Was
     this story also an advance planting of a future plot? I.e. the
     northern barbarians going to war? Moral dilema's for which side some
     of the adventurers fight on. Especially if the hords ever threaten

     I can't wait for 424. I've been on quite a few stag nights and I have
     witnessed most of the classical debauchery and accidents that can

Peter's great to see the old Peldor back!!!!

"Goddamn, that's a pretty fuckin' good milkshake!"
			-Vincent Vega, P.F.

  Gorin:  I wouldn't think so...but still, maybe we can keep Peldor from
    waking up in a ditch somewhere.
  Peldor:  I'd never do that!  (he grabs a pitcher and drinks from it)

I think you may have just solved the mysterious origin of Peldor from 
Adventures #1.  Nice touch.


Just as an aside....

I meant to comment on the Bachelor party episode.  It had me busting a gut
laughing.  All those wonderful inuendos and such.  Excellent job.  Although
the people I work with were wondering how I could get such a "kick" out of
my e-mail.


>     On a totally unrelated note, why the hell do all five of the
>   womens' names end in "a"?  How'd I let that happen?

Its pretty common in parts of Europe - in many places -a is a standard
female-form ending. It didn't strike me as the least bit odd. The
fact that Mongo and Bosco both end in -o as well gives the adventurers
a slightly Italian feel.


TM>  Cool.  I'm 1/4 Italian, myself.

hey thomas,

excellent plot twist at the end.  i really wasn't sure if you were going to
give peldor the guildmaster position (i figured it should go to someone else
as i described oh so long ago).  but the other twist really was a total
surprise!  but it makes total sense, if they didn't trust him before, then
why should he associate with them now, or even be their lacky.

i can't wait to see what happens from it.


Just wanted to drop you a note to tell you how much I am enjoying your 
Adventurers series.  I am a big fan of the World of Greyhawk, and some of 
your ideas will make your way into the campaign I am starting.  

I just finished Episode 274, and have a question.  The whole business of 
Torin and his group chasing down the 'evil' Belphanior reminds me of a 
short story by Karl Edward Wagner called 'Cold Light' in Robert Aspirin's 
_Book of Soldiers_.  I was wondering if you has read it & taken the 
inspiration for this plot line from it.  

Again, thanks for your excellent work.


TM>  Yup.

I was wandering how'd you take care of the above little...inconvenience!
I was certain that you wouldn't forget about this minor  ;)
problem, given that there were at least three high priests present in
the wedding (not to mention the possibility of going near Lightbringer),
and i was glad that you didn't dissapoint me!  
BTW, Victoria being a vampiress makes a perfect match with Bel, albeit a
predictable one (although i must admit i'd expected her to be some kind
of succubus or even a unique type deamon - hey, Bel is unique as well!)!
I can't wait to hear what her story really is...
Keep up the good work!

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