Kelfour Edition volume III number I

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 / \                                                                     \
|   |                      Plan Ahead for those Hot Summer Nights! Page 2 |
 |                                                                     |
 |                                                                     |
 |    GemStone III'S                                       June 1992   |
 |                                                       Vol.3, No.1   |
 |               _   _           _    ___                              |
 |              / ) / )         / )  / __)                             |
 |             / /_/ /  ____   / / _/ (   ____   __  __  ____          |
 |            /   __/  / __ ) / / (  __) / _  ) / / / / / ___)         |
 |           / /\ \   / ___/ / /  / /   / (/ / / (_/ / / /             |
 |          (_/  \_) (____) (_(  (_(   (____/ (_____( (_(              |
 |                    _____      _    _    _    _                      |
 |                   / ____)    / )  (/  _/ )  (/                      |
 |    _           _ / (__   ___/ /  _   (  _) _   ____   ____          |
 |   /_\         /_\ ____) / _  /  / )  / /  / ) / _  ) /    )         |
 |   |o| _______ |o|(__   / (/ /  / /  / /  / / / (/ / / /) /          |
 |   | |/   _   \| |___) (____(  (_(  (_(  (_( (____/ (_((_(           |
 |   |o|___/_\___|o|                                                   |
 |   |.  ..|O| . . |     The Kronicles of Kulthea                      |
 |   ~|  . | |   .|~                                                   |
 | .*.|____|_|____|.*.  .                                              |
 |__________\ \________________________________________________________|
 |                                                                     |
 |                                                                     |
 |  ......................... Local News .......................    1  |
 |  Level Six ..................................... Stanyon Sting   1  |
 |  Hot Summer Nights Agenda ................... from Simutronics   2  |
 |  Annual Hall of Fame ........................................    3  |
 |  Hear Ye! Oh, Newcomers to Kulthea! ............ Stanyon Sting   4  |
 |  High Sorcery, Part One: Path to Power .... Dartaghan Darkstar   6  |
 |  Rolled Rat and Kobold Kabobs ................. Sargon Garenth   8  |
 |  Tentative Open Essence Spell List  ..........................   9  |
 |  Compendium of Magic Items ...... Libraries House |{nightsaber  10  |
 |  First Blood .................................. Thantis Azzurn  12  |
 |  Reaan's Gift ............. Amelda Heronheart & Inyigo Montoya  13  |
 |  The Story of My Coming  ...................... Iomadh Dauphin  14  |
 |  The Old Man and the Wight Lord ........ Elminester Silvanisty  15  |
 |  Love Mourns Eternal ........................... Elyria Blythe  17  |
 |  Regrets ....................................... Feckly Fecund  19  |
 |  Symbols and Lies, Conclusion ......... Lord Whilder Planrathe  22  |
 |  Corruption in Kulthea ................ Miss Louvella Parsnips  26  |
 |                                                                     |
 |                                                                     |
 | Kelfour Edition of the Kronicles of Kulthea is devoted to the multi-|
 | player roleplaying game GemStone III on  GEnie Information Network. |
 | Submissions  may  be edited  for space, accuracy  and  readability. |
 | Contact Assistant Editors  Kalagay Halatil or Lady Rune Arundel, or |
 | Publisher Phaedra Bleu by GE Mail to P.HERRINGTON for details.      |
 |                                             Banner letters by Yonah |
 |   __________________________________________________________________|___
 |  /                                                                     /
                                LOCAL NEWS
      Maps & Reference Charts                Wands & Runes Modified
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~                ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Popular  Ranger Zepath Edgewater has   Tests  by  local residents have con-
assembled  his  vast  collection  of   firmed  that  wands  and runes began
Kulthean reference materials includ-   functioning   similarly   late  this
ing  highly  detailed  maps  of  all   month.  It appears that the realm is
accessible  hunting  areas near town   now  based  upon  profession.  Modi-
along  with  charts describing known   fiers have been determined:
traits  of  monsters  in  one  handy
tome.   Available  in  GIF  for  ALL    -30 Spell not in your realm.
types  of  PCs  and  ready to print,    -20 Spell is in your realm but not
this  material  is contained in File        on a list you can learn
#28  GIFMAPS8.LZH  from the GemStone    +10 Spell is in one of your lists,
Library, Option 8 on Page 930.              but you do not know it yet
                                        +30 You know the Spell
      Index to KE: Volume 2
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~            Gone  are  +/-60  possibilities, and
This Kelfour Edition marks the first   runes are now more accessible to the
issue of our third volume or year of   various professions.
publication.    Newcomers   to  town
often find back issues of value, and    _________________________________
an  index to articles published last   /                                 \
year  (Volume  2)  is  in  the final  |        Hot Summer Nights!         |
stages of assembly by Thantis Azzurn  |    Events & Contests: Next Page   |
as we go to press. Watch for it soon   \_________________________________/
in the GemStone III Library.
The  upcoming  Index  to Volume 2 is                Level Six
similar  in design and scope to that                ~~~~~~~~~
for KE's first year, Volume 1, which             by Stanyon Sting
is available in the MPGRT Library as
File  248  KEINDEX1.TXT.  Nearly 200     Hear this tale, I will be brief
player-written  articles  are cross-     On what it's like to be a Thief
referenced   by   type,  author  and         Tis a pretty fix I'm in
subject,  accompanied  by  the  file         For levels 1-5 I've been
name/number  of the KE in which each        Now, at level six, I fear
was  published  to  help  you select   My mind seems always fresh and clear
which  back  issues  would  be  most       Hillies my sword will break
valuable to your collection.               Cavers put my soul at stake
                                       And they who once put me to the test
     Natasha's Guide to Kulthea          Gobs and Lorcs are now but pests
     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~           Forest Trolls can still be fun
Now  returned  from faraway travels,     And Greater Orcs are on the run
well-known  Healer  Natasha Cheridin     But even these are little risks
visited the Kelfour Edition Building     I dream of Golems and Basilisks
recently.  Her mission was research-     To hear the Black Stalkers howl
ing the morgue files to verify facts      To slay Werebears on the prowl
and details for an upcoming revision     I'm told tales of Spider Priests
of her famous Guide to Kulthea.          And Unlife having a living feast
                                                 My heart is high
Natasha's  Updated  Guide to Kulthea            For I know one day
will  be available from the GemStone             The hour is nigh
Library  soon.   Be sure to keep the           When I join the fray
file  number  handy for recommending        Heaven it will seem to me
to newcomers to our lands.                  When level seven I will be
                 Spend those Hot Summer Nights in Kulthea!
            Contests, Prizes, Special Events throughout August!
                          Hot Summer Nights Agenda
August                                          (Schedule subject to change)
Sat/1:  One-Night Quest, Conducted by Lord Bardon
Sun/2:  Kickoff of the Kelfourian Assassins' Guild Game, to run entire month
Mon/3:  Beginning Night of Kulthean Olympics and Carnival
Tue/4:  Newbie Night + Olympics continue
Wed/5:  Town Forum + Olympics continue
Thu/6:  Olympics continue
Fri/7:  Olympics continue with Lord Bardon's Water Tunnel Races!
Sat/8:  Olympics conclude
Sun/9:  Full-scale auction, with different level tents
Mon/10: Bardic Song and Prose contest
Tue/11: Newbie Night
Wed/12: Town Forum                                  ____________________
Thu/13: MiniEvent, run by Giacomo                  /\                    \
Fri/14: Merchant Ship visits Kelfour's landing.    \@|   Find REAL Gems   |
Sat/15: Event (maze), run by Kygar.                  |                    |
-----------------------------------------------------|     In Kulthea     |
Sun/16: Gladitorial Games                            |                    |
Mon/17: ASCII art showcase/contest                   |   Throughout the   |
Tue/18: Newbie Night                                 |                    |
Wed/19: Town Forum                                 /@|  Month of August!  |
Thu/20: Blank                                      \/____________________/
Fri/21: Kickoff of Game-wide Scavenger Hunt
Sat/22: Conclusion of Game-wide Scavenger Hunt
Sun/23: Begin Major Quest (registration may be necessary)
Mon/24: Continue Major Quest
Tue/25: Continue Major Quest (possible Newbie Night)
Wed/26: Continue Major Quest (possible Town Forum)
Thu/27: Continue Major Quest
Fri/28: Continue Major Quest
Sat/29: Final Group runs of Major Quest
Sun/30: Conclusion of month-long Assassins' Game/Awards Ceremony
         + Opening of New Area to public.
The  Olympics  in the first week will include events like skinning and lock-
picking contests, GM dunking, brawling contests, pole vaulting, etc.
The Kelfourian Assassins' Guild Game will be a sort of 'tag' wherein players
"assassinate" targets.  Skill, luck, and not a little cunning required.
Complete rules for the Bardic, ASCII Art and Composition Contests are on the
MPGRT  Bulletin  Board.   To  read  ONLY  that message, enter MOVE 1045;1 on
GEnie,  then enter SET 20 at the prompt, followed by REA 3 62.  Some entries
must be submitted by July 31st.  Read the rules if you plan to enter.
The  Scavenger  Hunt  will  require  hunting throughout Kulthea for items on
lists.  The first few players returning completed lists will win prizes!
The  Quest  during  the last week of August will take place in an area which
will be opened on the last day of the month.
 / \                                                                        \
 |                                                                         |
 |     FIGHTER        Lvl      THIEF           Lvl |===========COMMON MAN==|
 |-------------------------------------------------|Beolost Lamontt      19|
 | Ise Ikiryo         22  Moonpie Legend        24 |Sauren Tessar        13|
 | Benar Stormarm     21  Valeria Deering       22 |Silent Mydnyghte     10|
 | Gilthor Longblade  21  Artuero Bresnahanini  22 |Rowena Ookami         8|
 | Waldo2 Ptolomy     21  Mikhail Minnehan      22 |Saar Halinot          4|
 | Kirk Bloodguard    20  Camorra Amandaus      21 |=============HIGH MAN==|
 | Garret Faerghhail  17  Griffun Skyborne      21 |Benar Stormarm       21|
 | Angeleyes DuLac    15  Laeg Cearnach         20 |Gilthor Longblade    21|
 | Peat Sallixto      13  Kyrenis Windrider     19 |Queron Kinevan       20|
 | Eyashusa Donestaya 13  Feckly Fecund         18 |Balm Loydrich        18|
 |_Dirac de Montegilt 13  Winter Moorsland      17 |Angeleyes DuLac      15|
  /------------------------------------------------|=============HALF ELF==|
 |     MAGE                    CLERIC              |Kayla Kyndhart       28|
 |-------------------------------------------------|Fxg Lyon             27|
 | Odds Bodkins       27  Taarna Wayfinder      26 |Rhys Corwinson       26|
 | Lose Soulblaster   26  Sindar d'Clairique    22 |Taarna Wayfinder     26|
 | Dagmar Istarii     25  Bashir Mskshadhvar    21 |Dagmar Istarii       25|
 | Certain Justice    23  Redeye Kielsson       20 |=============WOOD ELF==|
 | Elminester Silvan..23  Ardneh Cormorant      20 |Baram Lightclad      23|
 | Whilder Planrathe  23  Lohann McCloud        20 |Joqain Denark        20|
 | Baram Lightclad    23  Lairaerrykthrok Tyki..20 |Zhuge Liang          18|
 | Dartaghan Darkstar 23  Michealoos Duraderos  19 |Mithil Wyerla        17|
 | Karel Tasavalta    22  Zinderin Paxton       18 |Kaylin Darkmoor      16|
 |_Griffin Skywave    22  Tory Sterlington      17 |=============HIGH ELF==|
  /------------------------------------------------|Strom O'Berin        37|
 |     HEALER                  BARD                |Eol Elmoth           11|
 |-------------------------------------------------|Soulsavr Truespel     8|
 | Strom O'Berin      37  Enegue LionHeart      20 |Maia Moonsong         6|
 | Kayla Kyndhart     28  Vshaal hiJneksha's    16 |Aquarin Howenthorne   5|
 | Rhys Corwinson     26  Mendle Seldagrave     16 |=============FAIR ELF==|
 | Chardros Grax      25  Balladeer Carpentere  12 |Lose Soulblaster     26|
 | Caretaker D'Boldh  22  Damiano Faustas       11 |Chardros Grax        25|
 | Balm Loydrich      18  Elladan Palarran      10 |Certain Justice      23|
 | Vesitsa Talchild   17  Ringo Hobson           9 |Valeria Deering      22|
 | Unum LUX           16  Lorien Silvanesti      7 |Artuero Bresnahanini 22|
 | Woundhealer odlaw  16  Thundarii Kregen       7 |=============DWARF=====|
 |_Mystal Darkshado   15  Darksaul Payne         7 |Caretaker D'BoldHome 22|
  /------------------------------------------------|Vesitsa Talchild     17|
 |     RANGER                  SORCERER            |Vshaal hiJneksha's   16|
 |-------------------------------------------------|Hilgavolkas LaJolla   9|
 | Fxg Lyon            27  Enigma Sirillian     21 |Brand Brandenburg     9|
 | Yuri Hanbidt        24  Queron Kinevan       20 |=============HALFLING==|
 | Maruko Ashimine     22  Airioch Ramthanodox  20 |Odds Bodkins         27|
 | Nastrom Trevin      22  Isei Ikazuchi        19 |Dartaghan Darkstar   23|
 | Talon Elissidil     21  Mithil Wyerla        17 |Griffin Skywave      22|
 | Rune Arundel        20  Vlad Drakulya        16 |Enigma Sirillian     21|
 | Landreth deLorde    20  Warmajere DrakesBane 13 |Artemis Al~Anhir     21|
 | Arborius Draginson  20  Fallon Slaaon        12 |=======================|
 | Gallenod Varynesti  20  Coen Ni'shaang       11 |    Congratulations    |
 | Artaq Congress      19  Eol Elmoth           11 |        To All!        |
/|     Annual Hall of Fame by Profession and Race as of May 28, 1992       |
                     Hear Ye! Oh, Newcomers to Kulthea!
 ____________        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
/ \ ________ \               by Stanyon Sting
\@| ~|_|~~|| |
  |  |~|_|~~ |
 _|  |~|-|__ |  TIQUETTE   IN  TOWN:   Give  gifts!  Healers always can use
/@|  |~|__|| |  Most citizens gather   your extra crystal  amulets to  keep
\_/ ~~~~~~~~ /  in the Temple, as it   on the  "net" and thus be  available
  ~~~~~~~~~~~  is easy to get to and   to critically  injured  players  who
is renowned for its virtue in exper-   are  not able to make it back to the
ience  absorption  and  power  point   temple.  Non-magic  types can donate
regeneration. When many  are present   any runes they find to  rune-trained
to  socialize and transact business,   characters.  No  one in  Kulthea can
"whisper" your private conversations   prosper on his own,  and considerate
so  as  not  to  disturb others with   behavior at  early  levels  can make
your inconsequential utterings.        the   difference  between  Life  and
                                       Death in  Kulthea, as well as making
Found a chest?  You  may unlock  its   true and long-lasting friendships.
secrets  here.  Many kindly  thieves
are willing to risk  life  and  limb   ETIQUETTE  OUTSIDE  THE  GATE:  When
for your enrichment.  While I charge   you  encounter  another character in
not for  my  services,  I do  advise   battle with  a monster, DO  NOT join
offering  your  chest champion  some   the  fray  unless invited  to do so.
money  for  the  sake of politeness.   It  is   polite   to   ask  if   the
Beleaguer not the good thief to open   adventurer  needs  any  help.  Often
all your things on demand as soon as   you  get  a nod to join and, presto,
he or she enters the room, but  find   you have a hunting partner.
time to greet this selfless citizen.
You may thus avoid paying that  das-   Do  not   frivol  time   away   with
tard  locksmith  who preys upon your   questions when  you  come  upon some
pocketbook  like  a rabid navigator.   unfortunate  who is stunned or prone
Happy  am I to pick  chests  for any   with a monster in the room.  Use the
soul,  but  once  in a  while my own   "DRAG"  command to save the victim's
business at hand beckons me first.     life.  Know  the room exits and type
                                       DRAG (name  of character)  N or S or
Healers  are  found  here, too!  The   whatever the exit is.  Rooms with no
juxtaposition of hopes  within these   obvious exits do not allow dragging.
talented people  is  mighty  strange   In  this case, advise the person  to
indeed.  They  hope for  injuries to   QUIT  and  come  back a little later
fall  upon  us so  they may increase   when the monster is  gone.  If there
their  skills  through   experience.   is no response then stay, and  maybe
Yet, at  the  same  time, they  show   the monster will attack you instead.
compassion  for  us  by  taking  our   Saving someone's life is a wonderful
injuries upon themselves! Honor them   way to introduce yourself. ;)
unremittingly,  for  they are always
on  the  lookout for people who need   When  you  come across  a  group  of
their help.                            adventurers, it  is  mannerly to ask
                                       if  you  may join them.  However,  a
Friendly  spell  users  will  bestow   rejection  here  is not  necessarily
upon  you  some extra  DB or OB with   contemptible   behavior   on   their
their  spell  craft if  they take  a   part.  They  may be  too many.  They
liking  to  you and  want you  to be   may  be  higher level  characters on
safe outside the gate. The  best way   their way to  a place too  dangerous
in Kulthea to achieve all your goals   for you to hunt.  They  may be lower
as  fast  as  possible  is  to  make   level players  who  will be  hunting
friends. The simple 'thank  you' for   in  places   you    have   outgrown.
any favor goes a long way to achieve   Remember, though, there is safety in
fast friendships.                      numbers,  especially   since  it  is
                                    -4-                             More...
likely  you will meet death sometime   quickly as possible  to wait for the
in your career.                        next  attack,  and so  on. It  is an
                                       effective  way  to  fight,  but  the
YOU  JUST  BIT  THE  DUST!  You  are   risks  are  great.  If  the  monster
dead.  If  you are  killed  by  some   catches you  at parry  0  before you
lucky  monster,  you  drop  whatever   get  a  chance  to  change  back  to
you  are  carrying  in  your  hands,   parry 100...ACK!  Some  monsters are
most likely  your shield and weapon.   too fast for you to use this method.
If you are in a  party,  others  can   I suggest parry tagging  only  in  a
recover  your  stuff  to  return  to   group  until  you are  familiar with
you.  You  will (we hope) be  raised   the  various    monsters   and   how
by   some   wonderful   cleric,   or   quickly they attack.
(preferably not)  depart  from  your
body  and  re-appear in  the  temple   Because time  is  of  the essence in
sans all your equipment.               parry tag, using macros  is  crucial
                                       to your survival. Most communication
If  you  have died  alone, you  have   systems allow you to use macros, and
four  minutes  to linger  above your   I really advise it.  Macros   enable
body hoping  someone will come by to   you to invoke commands  without typ-
help.  After four  minutes, you will   ing more than a stroke or  two.  The
depart, leaving ALL your  belongings   time  saved  may be  the  difference
behind. You  then  reappear  in  the   between life and death in parry tag.
Temple, provided  you  have  honored
Eissa  with  a deed  on your record.   SURVIVAL TIPS:   Oh  boy,  a  chest!
At  first  level there is no penalty   When   gathering   treasure  in  the
for  dying  (up to five deaths), but   wilds outside  of Kelfour's Landing,
after that  you can  suffer grievous   ALWAYS  put away your shield and NOT
harm to your statistics.               your weapon.  At Parry 100, all your
                                       weapon  bonus goes  into your defen-
I  suggest  that if  you  have  been   sive  posture.  When  you  put  your
obliterated,  you  wait about  three   weapon away, you lose all that bonus
minutes  in  the hope  that  someone   and thus are vulnerable to an attack
may  pass  by who  will get help. If   from whatever whatever may walk into
no  one  comes, then  quit the  game   the  room.  The  only  exception  to
and  go to  the  MPGAMES  RoundTable   this rule would be for the level one
Conference.  GemStone  has  its  own   player whose  OB  is  actually  less
room  in   the   Multi-Player  Games   than a shield's DB bonus.
RoundTable,  Room  9 - The GemStone
Temple Room.  Other  poor  souls may   FINDING  AN  ITEM:  When  groups  of
be waiting there, and  clerics check   hunters find such special items as a
in  now  and then.  If someone  does   Ruby  Amulet or a Black Storm Blade,
look in,  be  sure  to mention  your   and everyone  wants  it, then  it is
plight  to  get  help.   Deaths  are   customary to "roll" for it.  Players
announced  throughout  the  land  to   put their weapons away (please go to
every  player,  so if a companion of   a safe  place  before you  do this),
yours gets  wind  of  your premature   parry at 100, and attack each  other
demise,  most  likely they  will  go   once.  Whoever  rolls   the  highest
meet you  in the  RTC to see if they   number  with the 100 sided dice wins
can help. This  is  another  example   the   item.   This  is  fun  because
of  how  developing  friendships  is   attacking your  friends is something
crucial to success in GemStone.        you don't normally want to do.  Be a
                                       good  sport  and  congratulate   the
BATTLE TIPS:  Parry  tag  is  played   winner for being so fortunate unless
thus:  "Parry"   at  100  when   the   of course, you win (yeah!).
monster   attacks    you.    Quickly
"parry"  at  0 to attack the monster.  TESTING AN  ITEM: Ok,  you have this
Return  to   parry  100   again   as   special item.  Now what?  The  first
                                    -5-      [Continued on Page 7]
                     High Sorcery Part One: Path to Power
 _______________     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
/ \ ____    ____\            by Dartaghan Darkstar
\@| +|~| __ |~|+|
  |  |~|/~~\|~| |
 _|  |~/~/\~\~| |hy on Kulthea would   I  still  pay  homage to that gifted
/@| _|__/  \__|_| anyone  in   their   young  sorcerer,  I believe his name
\_/_____________/ right mind want to   was Ishmael, who devised the current
be a sorcerer?  A young sorcerer can   power   point  regeneration  formula
barely  defeat  a  torkaan in single   used  by  GemStone.   Prior to Sept.
combat  and that's only if s/he uses   of  1990,  spellcasters  regenerated
a  sword.   What could be more path-   one power point every two minutes in
etic  than a youngster trying to use   the  field and two at an earth node.
magic  to  blast  a  rotten tempered   That  meant  that all spell- casters
sheep  and  getting  - rather than a   would  regenerate powers at the same
pelt - a bad case of slurred speech?   rate  no  matter  what  level.  Now,
While  this  daunting  scenario dis-   thanks  to Ishmael, that level fifty
courages  most  people  from  trying   sorcerer  gets  ten power points per
sorcery, it is not the whole story.    cycle in the field and 20 at a node.
                                       The  current formula allows a spell-
The  real  truth,  known only by the   caster  to  regenerate  10%  of  her
maniacal  practitioners of high sor-   maximum  power  points in the field,
cery,  is  that  the rewards of high   and 20% at an earth node.
sorcery  are as great as the road to
them  are forbidding, not to mention   Base  Attack  Spells  (such  as  the
prolonged.  Some experienced practi-   sorcerer's  Touch of Disruption) use
tioners  of  the trade like Airioch,   Base Attack Rolls (BAR). When a sor-
Enigma,   Queron   and  others  have   cerer  casts  a Base Attack spell, a
discovered that their magical attack   100-sided  die  is  rolled  and  the
spells  are  beginning  to  be  very   result  is referred to as the unmod-
effective  in destroying their prey.   ified  BAR.  Then the caster's level
It is still true, however, that even   is  added,  along with other modifi-
at  level  20,  sorcerers  are still   cations  due  to magic or armor worn
unable to hunt alone effectively and   by the caster, to the unmodified BAR
do  best  in larger hunting parties.   to get the modified BAR.  The target
But by the time they reach level 30,   then  rolls  a 100-sided die for its
these  sorcerers will be as powerful   unmodified   Resistance  Roll  (RR).
as any other player of like level no   Any  added  resistance  such as that
matter what profession he or she may   provided  by  magic  or  armor,  es-
be,  and may even be able to solo as   pecially  metal based armor, is then
well.  And no one, not even the most   added to that D100 roll.
powerful Hobbit mage will be able to
challenge  them  with  impunity once   If  the target's modified Resistance
they reach Legend status (level 50).   Roll  (RR)  is  less than sorcerer's
                                       modified  BAR, then the target fails
This  metamorphosis  is possible due   to resist the attack.  It then rolls
to  two  unique features of the Role   another D100 die to see which criti-
Master/GemStone  magic  system:  The   cal  it  will  be  hit with from the
bane/blessing  of Base Attack Spells   Critical  Tables  used  by GemStone.
(BAS),  the source of the sorcerer's   Therein  lies  the secret behind the
power,  and  its  use  of  the  Base   metamorphosis  of  the wimpy sorcery
Attack  Roll (BAR) combined with the   practiced  by low level sorcerers to
incredible increase in the number of   the  near-omnipotent  power  of High
power points available to high level   Sorcery:  While the Sorcerer's level
sorcerers.  A level five sorcerer is   is  added  to  his Base attack roll,
likely  to  have  a  maximum  of ten   the  target's  level  is  not!  This
power  points  while  a  level fifty   translates  to a level five sorcerer
Legend will probably have 100 plus.    only  getting  a  Level  Bonus  of 5
                                    -6-                             More...
while  a level fifty sorcerer gets a    Hear Ye!  [Continued from Page 5]
bonus  of 50!  If the caster and the    ~~~~~~~~
target  are  the same level, all the   thing  you do is pick it up and drop
sorcerer  needs is a modified BAR of   it.  Sometimes an item is cursed, in
+51 over the modified RR roll of the   which case you  will not  be able to
target to tag it!                      drop it; then you will need a cleric
                                       to uncurse it for you.
If you crave to be the ultimate des-
troyer  and  are  undaunted  by  the   Ok, you know it's not cursed, 'cause
prolonged apprenticeship and forbid-   you can drop it.  Now what?  You can
ding road to high sorcery, go for it   test it in the field (or you can get
today!   The  sooner  you start, the   a friend  to test it  for you if you
sooner you will reach that legendary   are not sure how),  to see if it has
status  where  you  will  be able to   any  special  qualities  in  combat.
cast  killer spells all day and your   You can look at it, search it,  wear
targets  will virtually be unable to   it, rub it, wave it, invoke it, kick
resist your powerful sorcery.          it,  and  generally try  anything to
                                       see what special properties it might
            Disclaimer                 have.  Some people in  the land  are
            ~~~~~~~~~~                 quite  experienced  in item lore and
Practice  High  Sorcery  at your own   may have  seen  something like  this
risk.   Neither  KE's  Staff nor the   one before.  So ask around.
author  will  be responsible for the
mental  health  or  lack  thereof of   The  surest way to examine this item
anyone  who  starts down the road to   is to test it at the "Crystal."  The
High  Sorcery  and  ends  up just as   crystal  is located in a secret room
demented  as s/he is powerful.  Con-   in  the Abandoned Inn located at the
sider  carefully  not only the skill   end of  hill troll  country.  Do not
and  persistence necessary to attain   try  to  go there  alone unless  you
high  sorcery  but also the depth of   can face hill trolls that wield two-
the pockets required.                  handed  swords,  and  unless you can
                                       stand off the wraiths in the inn.
Coming in the next KE:  High Sorcery
Part  Two:   Guide  to Power -- Your   So  you  somehow have made it to the
Guide  to Rolling and Developing the   crystal.  Hold the item in your left
Ultimate Destroyer.                    hand  and  touch  the  crystal  with
  _________________________________    your bare right hand. If  sparks run
 /                                \\   across  the  item,  then it has some
|                                  ||  magical properties.  "No sparks,  no
|    Free Weekends in Kulthea!     ||  magic" is generally the rule.  Beams
|    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~     ||  shooting off an item are a good sign
| Hunting Binge, Honeymoon or just ||  of power.
| Happy  Daze...   Play  from  6PM ||
| Friday to 8AM Monday (your local ||  Shaalk, laen, ET'D  stuff, and other
| time)   in  the  ShadowWorld  of ||  enchanted  materials will all have a
| GemStone III  -- FREE --  on the ||  beam with a unique color.  An item's
| Weekend of your choice!          ||  approximate  number  of  charges  is
|                                  ||  indicated  by  the  sound  it  plays
| How?  By contributing to Kelfour ||  when you  touch the  crystal. A  few
| Edition. Send GE Mail to Phaedra ||  people in the  Land have studied the
| Bleu (P.HERRINGTON) for details. ||  crystal, and I suggest you find them
|                                  ||  and  consult with  them  to decipher
 \________________________________//   these color and sound codes for you.
                        Rolled Rat and Kobold Kabobs
 ______________         ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
/ \ ____  ____ \             by Sargon Garenth
\@| ~| |  | |~ |
  |  |~|--|~|  |
 _|  |~|--|~|  |ere's a tasty little dish, the first in a series for those
/@| _|~|  |~|_ | of you who wonder  what to do with  pesky creatures after
\_/ ~~~~  ~~~~ / you've successfully skinned them.
~~~~~~~~~~~~                             _______________________________
  1  kobold                             /\                              \
  1  giant rat                          \@|            Note              |
  1  large onion or a dozen miniatures    |                              |
  2  large tomatoes or a dozen cherries   |  If you lack the culinary    |
  2  large green peppers                  |  boldness to sample properly |
  2  large potatoes or a dozen small      |  prepared rat or kobold,     |
     purple-skinned potatoes              |  common beefsteak may be     |
  1  package toothpicks                   |  substituted for fillets.    |
  4  skewers (minimum)                  /@|                              |
  1. Kill, skin and gut kobold and rat.
  2. Fillet both into 4 inch by 6 inch rectangles minimum; the larger the
     better.  Trim fillets until they are 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick.
  3. Chop vegetables fine to personal preference. Thin strips also work.
  4. Prepare meat to taste.  Suggestions include:
       a. plain                     f. barbecue sauce
       b. salt and pepper           g. curry sauce
       c. soy sauce                 h. cajun sauce
       d. garlic and onion salt     i. any desirable combo
       e. allspice                     of the above.
  5. Marinade fillets a few hours in a good wine of your choice to soften
     the meat and make it chewable.
  6. Lay fillets flat on a plate.
  7. Mix vegetables in a large bowl.
  8. Place an appropriate amount of mixed vegetables lengthwise in each
     fillet. Roll fillet over vegetables until a sort of enchilada or meat
     roll is formed.
  9. Pinch and secure both ends of each meat roll with toothpicks.
 10. Skewer the meat roll.  When done properly, the bulge of vegetables
     should be below the skewer when the skewered meat roll is held
     parallel to the flat ground.  This, along with the toothpicks securing
     each end, prevents the juices from leaking out during cooking.
 11. Barbecue skewers parallel to flat ground until done.
 12. Serve and enjoy.
  /\                                                                   \
  \@|                                                                   |
    |                  Tentative Open Essence Spell List                |
    |                  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~                |
    |               See MPGRT Bulletin Board for Discussion.            |
    |                                                                   |
    |   Guarding I           (401)       Dispell Magic        (412)     |
    |     +10 To RRS, and -10 to           Dispell a prepared spell,    |
    |     Elemental attack types.          magical effect or PPS.       |
    |                                                                   |
    |   Presence             (402)      Bladeturn            (413)      |
    |     Reveals Hidden/Invisible        Target gets phys OB penalty   |
    |     characters/creatures            equal to caster's level.      |
    |                                                                   |
    |   Locklore             (403)      Essence Strike       (414)      |
    |     +10, +1 per/lvl for lock-       Magical RR attack             |
    |     picking (1/2 effect on                                        |
    |     others)                       Telepathy            (415)      |
    |                                     Telepathic communication      |
    |   Traplore             (404)        between two people.           |
    |     As Locklore but for                                           |
    |     Disarm skill                  Essence Armor        (416)      |
    |                                     Creates a suit of magical     |
    |   Essence Bolt         (405)        armor.                        |
    |     Attack vs RR                                                  |
    |                                   True Strike          (417)      |
    |   Guarding II          (406)        Plus to magic and phys OB     |
    |     +10 to Physical DB              equal to casters level.       |
    |                                                                   |
    |   Detect Magic         (407)      Gather Flows         (418)      |
    |     Detects spells on people        Create a temporary Earthnode. |
    |     and objects                                                   |
    |                                   Mass Guarding        (419)      |
    |   Word of Opening      (408)        +20 to physical and magical   |
    |     IN Bonus % to open a            DB of a group.                |
    |     locked container or door.                                     |
    |                                   Imbed Spell          (420)      |
    |   Word of Disarming    (409)        Create a magical item.        |
    |     IN Bonus % to disarm trap.      (Example: wand)               |
    |                                                                   |
    |   Essence Blade        (410)      Guarding True        (425)      |
    |     Creates a magical blade,        Plus of caster level to       |
    |     plus of caster's level.         Magic DB, Phys DB and RRs.    |
    |                                                                   |
    |   Essence Shield       (411)      Drain Power          (430)      |
    |     Creates a magical shield,       Drain PPs from another.       |
    |     plus of caster's level.                                       |
    |                                                                   |
    |                    Flow Riding          (450)                     |
    |                      Magical transportation                       |
   _|                      to an Earthnode.                             |
  /@|                                                                   |
                         Compendium of Magic Items
 _______________         ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
/ \ ____    ____\          From the Libraries of
\@| +|~| __ |~|+|           House |{nightsaber
  |  |~|/~~\|~| |
 _|  |~/~/\~\~| | ands, staves,  and   A Quicksilver Potion - Foul-smelling
/@| _|__/  \__|_| magic   items   of   potion with unknown properties.
\_/_____________/ might in  Kulthea:
                                       A  Faded Yellow Page - This page was
A Glass Orb - This sphere radiates a   ripped  from  a  long lost book.  It
magical  energy.  It appears fragile   allows   the   owner   to  cast  the
and of little use.  Our scholars are   Invisibility spell.
in the dark on its properties.
                                       A  Chalky  Potion - This was created
An  Amulet  of  Warding - Allows its   by  a wandering mage who was feeling
owner  to cast Wall of Force.  Simi-   homesick  for  his  own  lands.   It
lar to the power in ruby amulets.      tastes  terrible,  but its effect is
                                       highly  addictive.   Similar  to the
A Wand  of Untrammeling  - This wand   crystal  amulets  in  Kulthea, these
creates  a  beam  of  intense  heat,   cast  ESP powers in the ancient land
which melts  any webs which stick to   of Elanthia.
a fellow adventurer.
                                       Willow Staff - This staff is a staff
A  Lead  and  Copper  Staff - A fine   of Untrammelling.  Destroys webs.
looking  staff,  it  is made of lead
and  copper, which gives it a golden   Swirling  Amulet  - This casts Rapid
and silver shine.                      Fire when rubbed.
A  Talisman  of  Discernment  - This   Scarlet Amulet - Similar to the ruby
little item casts the spell Presence   amulets,   these   cast   the   open
when  rubbed.   It  helps search out   channeling   spell  Wall  of  Force.
invisible and hidden persons.          However, these offer more charges.
A  Holy  Icon  - A holy symbol which   An  Ash Wand - A dark red wand which
casts Lifekeeping I.                   tosses massive fireballs when waved.
Crystal  Ball  -  A clear, colorless   Carved Idol of Eissa - Another cler-
crystal,  expertly  cut and polished   ical item, also casts Lifekeeping.
to be perfectly spherical.  Known to
possess some magic.                    Eog  Holy  Symbol - This symbol aids
                                       the  wielder in destroying mid-level
A  Glass  Wand  -  A  wand made from   undead monsters.
clear  glass.   It  seems  to have a
perpetual   lightning  storm  raging   A  Holy  Relic - Casts Lifegiving I.
inside  and releases lightning bolts   It  gives  the  owner the ability to
when waved at a target.                call  upon a deity to raise a fallen
A Crystal Wand - A wand made of pure
crystal.  It is smooth and clear and   A  Willow  Wand  - Casts Dispell II.
casts the spell Water Bolt.            Similar to the eog holy symbol, this
                                       item   lets  the  owner  cast  Repel
A  Black  Crystal Rod - About a foot   Undead II.
long,  it seems to absorb all light.
When waved, it casts Fear.             A  Staff  of  Light - Casts light(?)
                                       Scholars  at  House  Knightsaber are
A  Shimmering  Potion - This concoc-   not positive about its effects.
tion  looks  very  pure, comforting,
and cleansing.                                                      More...
Golden  Anhk  -  This powerful relic   Holy Shards - Properties unknown.
casts  the  spell  Lifegiving  True.
You  need skill in channeling to use   Spirit   Wands  -  These  mysterious
this wand.                             wands  cast  Lifekeeping  on  fallen
                                       comrades  to  allow  time  to find a
A  Rune-Covered Steel Tube - A small   powerful  cleric  with the abilities
tube   inlaid  with  magical  runes.   to ressurect.
Casts the spell Sleep III.
                                       Prayer Beads - Properties unknown.
A  Hot  Metal  Tube - This tube con-
stantly gives off heat.  When waved,   Iron Amulet - This amulet is made of
it creates huge balls of fire.         solid  iron.  Even though it is dull
                                       looking,   constant   rubbing  could
A Multihued  Wand -  A  wand  having   cause it to become shinier.  It also
many colors.  Properties unknown.      grants Strength with each rub.
An Oaken  Staff -  A staff  made  of   Glass  Spider  -  A fairly rare item
oak.  Properties unknown.              rumored  to cast one of the sorceror
                                       spells.   Made  of solid glass, this
A Blue Crystal - A pure blue crystal   spider is jeweled with ruby eyes and
which  casts the spell Guidance when   diamond fangs.
rubbed.   Its charges are rumored to
range from 1 to 30+.                   A  Swirled  Glass  Amulet - Swirling
                                       fog  can be seen inside this amulet.
A  Dark  Laquered   Wand  - Cures  a   Rub to cast Airwall.
fellow  adventurer of poison.
                                       A  Sun  Wand - This shiny red-orange
Black Crystal Wand - This shiny dark   wand  allows  any  healer  to create
wand  made  from  fine crystal casts   herbs needed for healing.
Fear when waved.
                                       A  Grey  Potion  - This plain potion
A Platinum Wand - A finely made wand   casts   the   spell   Strength  when
crafted in expensive platinum.  When   quaffed.   It  gives  the user a +15
pointed  and  waved  at a target, it   bonus to OB for 30 secs per level of
sends great waves of lightning bolts   the  user.   It  also  tells you how
against a foe.                         many  uses  are  left  so you always
                                       know how much is left.
A  Red  Wand  -  This  fine piece of
magic casts deadly fireballs.          A Silvery Potion - This slick potion
                                       grants  the user a minor increase in
A Willow Staff - Properties unknown.   speed for a short time.
Made of willow wood.
                    |ZZzzz      /^\            |ZZzzz
                    |          |~~~|           |
                    |        |^^^^^^^|        / \
                   /^\       |[]+    |       |~~~|
                |^^^^^^^|    |    +[]|       |   |
                |    +[]|/\/\/\/\^/\/\/\/\/|^^^^^^^|
                |+[]+   |~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~|    +[]|
                |       |  []   /^\   []   |+[]+   |            __________
                |   +[]+|  []  || ||  []   |   +[]+|       -------
                |[]+    |      || ||       |[]+    |_______
   ___________  |_______|------------------|_______|
 ____________                 First Blood
/ \   ____   \                ~~~~~~~~~~~
\@| /~/~~\\  |             by Thantis Azzurn
  ||~|    ~~ |
 _||~|  |==| | reetings,  Kultheans!   I saw nothing the dark chamber.
/@| \~\__//  | Among  our many  pos-
\_/  ~~~~~   / sessions, perhaps our   I  mustered  up  enough  courage  to
  ~~~~~~~~~~~  most precious are our   charge into the next chamber.  I was
memories.  The past must not be for-   greeted  by two glowing red eyes.  A
gotten,  or  we are doomed to repeat   giant  rat, the size of the youngest
it.   I  remember my arrival in Kel-   hobbits  of  my  village, charged at
four's Landing... and my first hunt.   me,  foam  drooling  from its mouth.
                                       Blocking   it   with  my  shield,  I
It  was a cold and blustery day when   chanted the strange words to open my
a  young hobbit, me, Thantis Azzurn,   body  to  the  forces of Essence and
first  entered  the  large  town  of   focus them into an electric bolt.  I
Kelfour's  Landing.   The  wind  was   swung  wildly  at  the  bloodthirsty
strong.  Night was just beginning to   beast,  missing  it  by  inches.  It
fall   upon  the  town.   A  distant   charged  again,  nearly  knocking me
cousin   of  mine,  another  Thantis   over   by  the  pure  force  of  its
Azzurn,  had  been a citizen of Kel-   attack.   Still  unharmed,  I fought
four's   for   a   time,  before  he   on.   I chanted the final word of my
departed   to  serve  on  a  sailing   mystic  spell  and let the bolt flow
expedition  to  parts  unknown,  and   from  me into the rat.  It flew into
knowing  of  my intention to take up   the wretched beast, burning the nose
residence   in   the  town,  left  a   from  its  evil  face, and the rat's
package with the good healers in the   movement ceased.
Temple  of Eissa.  I pulled my cloak
tight  around me as I walked through   I approached it, preparing to remove
the  dark  streets.  Stopping by the   it's  fur  coat  as  my prize.  As I
temple,  I  gathered what turned out   neared  the body, it sprung upon me,
to be most of my cousin's old adven-   sinking  its  teeth  into  the  soft
turing  gear;  I thanked the healers   flesh  of  my leg.  Again I began my
and  tipped  them what little cash I   incantations.  I swung again with my
could  afford.   Settling  my debits   blade,  cutting deep into its chest.
with  the  clerk of the town, I went   Fresh,  warm  blood  oozed  from its
to visit  the  weapon  smith, Tyron.   wound down my blade.  The feel of it
After giving me a fine, stout blade,   as  it reached my flesh made my skin
he told me that I might find rats in   crawl.   The  rat,  still conscious,
the   town's  ancient  catacombs  on   sprung again.  I "hurled" the second
which to test it.                      bolt  at it in mid swing.  The shock
                                       stopped  the  poor beast's heart and
Pulling  out  my cousin's journal, I   it  fell  to the earth before me.  I
located  the  catacombs  and  ran to   had  done  too  much  damage to save
them.  The town was dark, poorly lit   the pelt, but I  removed  one of the
by  odd  lanterns  and torches along   rat's  teeth as a  memento.  I  then
the   streets.   Residents  scurried   returned  to  the  Temple of  Eissa,
past  me,  caught  up  in  their own   laying upon a bench  inside, to con-
affairs.  (I later learned there was   templated my situation. That was the
a  treasure  hunt  in town, with the   first  time I killed, and the exper-
great  chest  I had seen outside the   ience would change my life forever.
temple  as a prize.) I found the odd
entrance to the catacombs in a small   Looking  back  upon  that day now, I
cul-de-sac  of Keltern's Way.  Grab-   think  how much easier my life might
bing  a torch, I slung my shield off   have  been,  had  I run from the rat
my shoulder and drew my small blade.   and  back to my homeland.  The gains
Stepping  inside,  I held my breath,   outweigh the risks, though, and life
waiting  to face fierce horrors, but   is never easy.
        ._  ___    ^       ^    .   . '____      ___     ___ _____
        | \ |     / \     / \   |\  |  |         |  '  | |     |
        |=/ |==  /===\   /===\  | \ |   \==      |  __ | |==   |
        | \ |__ /     \ /     \ |  \|     /      |__|' | |     |
           '                        '  __/               '
 Poem and layout by Amelda Heronheart          ASCII art by Inyigo Montoya
|                                                                         |
|    I gave birth in a wood            ##############################     |
|    Alone in my Time                  ##############################     |
|    To a green-eyed daughter,         ##########,//;\\##############     |
|    Perfection                        #########//__  __\############     |
|                                      #######////  .. '||###########     |
|    Held warm by my side              ######|||||  __ )|||##########     |
|    We communed through that night    ######|||||   _/ @@@@@))######     |
|    With no aid from a single         ######|||||    @@@@@@@@^'#####     |
|    Direction                         ######|||||   @@@@. . | |#####     |
|                                      #####||||||\ @@@@@ ^ /  ######     |
|    Until near the dawn               #####||||||  \ @@@@@/   @#####     |
|    When I fitfully slept             #####||||||    \ @@/   @@@####     |
|    And I dreamed of dark gods        #####||||||      \/   @@@@####     |
|    And deception                     ####||||||| @@       @@@@@####     |
|                                      ####||||||| @@@@@   @@@@@#####     |
|    I importuned Reaan                ####||||||| `@@@@@@@@@@"######     |
|    The Lord of the Night             ####|||||||| @@@@@@@@"||######     |
|    To save my young babe,            ###|||||||||  `@@@@@"|||######     |
|    Love's conception                                                    |
|                                                                         |
|    Reaan's voice rasped               I shall grant her support         |
|    In the ear of my dream             As she travels the shore          |
|    That he'd not alter                Of the darkness,                  |
|    Predestination                     Unlife's incantations             |
|                                                                         |
|    My child would be taken            In a clerical robe                |
|    Alive from my arms                 With a cleric's pure soul         |
|    And raised mid foul beings'        She will find all her needed      |
|    Subjugation                        Protection                        |
|                                                                         |
|    Amelda, he said,                   And she'll one day return         |
|    I will do what I can,              To the land of her birth          |
|    I cannot stop this cruel           To pursue yet her noble           |
|    Separation                         Profession                        |
|                                                                         |
|    But I'll grant her a gift          Look you for green eyes           |
|    And I'll stand by her side,        And for dark curly hair           |
|    In these ways I can offer          And a pale half-elven             |
|    Salvation                          Complexion                        |
|                                                                         |
|    I shall grant her the means        Your daughter shall find you      |
|    To defend her own mind             Fear not my dear one              |
|    Against demons' profane            She is strong, your intrepid      |
|    Violation                          Reflection                        |
|   ___________________________________________________________________   |
|  / \                                                                 \  |
|  \@|  Lady Phaedra Bleu,  I found this parchment in the province of  |  |
|  /@|  Werebears. It appears to be of some interest....   - Aegyptia  |  |
|  \_/_________________________________________________________________/  |
                           The Story of My Coming
 _______________        by Iomadh Dauphin, Unbeliever,
/ \ ____    ____\          Bearer of the White Gold
\@| +|~~\  /~~|+|
  |  |~\~\/~/~| |y name is Iomadh. I   skin  is  perhaps  my  most striking
 _|  |~|\~~/|~| | am a Drow.  I come   feature.    My  skin  is  a  uniform
/@| _|~| ~~ |~|_| from  the lands of   glossy  black.   Not  black  in  the
\_/ ~~~~    ~~~~/ the Drow, far, far   sense  of the Negroes, who originate
  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ to the southeast --   in  a land I know nothing about, but
farther  than  you care to know, and   black  in the sense of night.  Black
nearer than I care to remember.  The   as  the remains of a firepit.  Black
farther  the better, I think; for my   like  the pitch that oozes from some
brothers  and  my  kindred  threw me   trees,  trees  that I am so familiar
out.   They  made  me an outcast be-   with. Trees that are now my friends.
cause  I did not share their love of
destruction,  looting and pillaging.   Can  you cast my image in your mind?
I  desire a life of peace; a life of   Can  you see how striking I must be?
harmony  and  serenity,  but that is   I do not say this to brag -- rather,
not the way of the Drow -- they cast   I  say it as a simple fact.  Can you
me out because of what I hold dear.    not   also   see   how  I  would  be
                                       rejected,  shunned,  even avoided by
Thankfully, I knew enough to survive   people  not of my own kind?  Can you
on  my  own,  relying on my wits and   see  how  people, not knowing what I
skill to survive in the wild forest,   was or where I came from, would have
the  jungles,  the  hills  and moun-   no  desire  to  know?   I have found
tains,  and  finally the plains sur-   that  most  beings have a great fear
rounding greater Kulthea.              of  the unknown, and I approach that
                                       fairly   closely.   The  thing  most
I  heard  rumours  of  Kulthea  soon   unknown  to  the  sentient  races, I
after  I left my homelands, never to   think,   is   the   Unlife,   and  I
return.  I heard of this place where   certainly have had my taste of being
the fettle of adventurers determined   mistaken for Unlife.
their  social  standing, where their
skill  alone distinguished them from
their  peers.  I heard of this place   Luckily,  I  had the forethought and
where  there was no prejudice, where   materials  to  keep  a journal of my
there was little hatred or dislike.    travels.   This  journal  may  be of
                                       some  small  interest  to  you.   Of
Prejudice,  hatred,  dislike:  These          [Continued on Page 16]
are  all  important  to  me, because          _____________________
being  a  Drow,  I  do not look much         /                     \
like other inhabitants of the world.        /                       \
Of course, I share with other intel-       /                         \
ligent  species  the characteristics      /                           \
of  having two legs, two arms, and a     /_                           _\
head,  but  that  is about where the    |  \    ______     ______    /  |
similarity  ends.   I found early in    |   |  | (.)  |   | (.)  |  |   |
my  travels  that  these differences    |   |   \____/     \____/   |   |
were  what  would  separate  me from    |   |          /\           |   |
everyone else that I encountered.       |__/          /  \           \__|
                                        /            /_/\_\             \
Differences,  you  ask?   Well, I am    \_____                     _____/
fairly  young  yet, even for an Elf.    |   | \_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _/ |   |
However,  my  hair is silver and has    |   | |_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_| |   |
been  from  birth; or so I hear.  My     \   \  _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ /  /
eyes  are  violet, an uncommon color      \   \|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_/  /
even  among Drow.  And my skin -- my       \                         /
                                   -14-     \_______________________/
 _____________        The Old Man and the Wight Lord
/ \ _________ \       ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
\@| ||=|=|=|| |          by Elminester Silvanisty
  | ~~ |_| ~~ |
 _|    |_|    |  he   fierce   steel   make sure  that nobody was following
/@|   _|_|_   |  golems  disappeared   him.  He came to a stop at the  arch
\_/__________/  mysteriously one day   where the golem statue stands.
from  the  ruins  close  to  Blototh
Mountain,  and  I  had  to hunt Fire   The old man began to move his finger
Guardians in the volcano to maintain   in a  manner that  I recognized  but
my skills.  Early one morning I came   never  used.   A  rush   of   Unlife
out of  the vent hole in the volcano   gathered,   and    suddenly,    from
to tend  a broken  and bleeding  leg   nowhere,  a  dark  figure  appeared,
and head  toward the magical healing   tall  as   a  Fire   Guardian.   The
pool to  the south.   A  Titan  came   apparition  wore   a  robe  torn  in
from nowhere  and my  only weapon, a   places through  which you  could see
camouflaged iron rapier, disappeared   no sign  of a  body.  Its  red  eyes
in a burst of fire.                    glowed  with  anger and cruelty.  It
                                       had no other face, just a black aura
My right hand burned, I found myself   that sent fear to my heart.  I  knew
defenseless against  the Titan, so I   what the creature was: a Wight Lord,
ran upward  to  find  a  safe  area.   one of the  most powerful  Undead in
Golems  no   longer  walked  in  the   all Kulthea.
ruins, I  knew, so I went in through
the door.                              It was holding a dark  knife covered
                                       with blood in its spectral hand. The
As I  was closing the door after me,   weapon was familiar to me  from some
I saw  an old  man  walking  in  the   research in  the  city of Arion.  It
ruins.   He was  wearing black robes   was  a  Slay-Knife, the most dreaded
and black  sandals, and a pendant in   weapon  used  by  the  Unlife.  This
the shape  of a  golem hung from his   will  kill you, but  more than that,
neck. His  face was all wrinkled and   it  will  turn   you  into a Wraith.
old, his  hair was  long and  white,   I shuddered at the thought.
his eyes had a mysterious look as if
a great  burden had been put on him.   The  old   man  spoke  to  the  foul
I felt  that this man once had great   creature. "Master,  I have  done  as
command of  Essence,  but  could  no   you instructed  and supplied the new
longer work with it.                   traps to the creatures of the land."
I saw  the shadow on him of those of   The Wight  spoke, and  I could smell
us who  take the dark path, but this   the  nauseating   stench  from   its
man was different.  He radiated such   mouth.   "You  have  done  well,  my
an aura  of pure  Unlife that even I   disciple."  The   old   man   smiled
felt chills all over my body. With a   faintly. The Wight spoke again. "For
gesture and  whispered words, I cast   so long  have you been gone teaching
the spell  that makes  me invisible.   these creatures  how to  trap  their
The  old  man  moved  north,  and  I   chests  with  the  newest  and  most
followed, curious  to know  what  he   cunning traps  that  my  Master  can
was doing in these ruins.              offer." Unexpectedly,  the  creature
                                       trembled in  a surge of Essence that
Curiosity is my most dangerous flaw;   even  I   could  feel,  but  with  a
if I  had a  coin for  every time it   gesture   the    creature   steadied
got me  into trouble, I could be the   itself. I  could  see  the  constant
richest half-elf in all of  Kulthea.   struggle between Essence and Unlife.
The old man kept moving north, and I
followed as  quietly as  possible to   The creature  spoke again. "You will
avoid detection.  Now  and  then  he   be rewarded. It  is  time for you to
looked around  over his  shoulder to   resume your duties in the production
                                   -15-                             More...
of  golems.     We   must  keep  the   down. I  had no  choice but  to call
population  of   Kelfour's   Landing   upon  life-draining   powers.  As  I
under control." Both of them laughed   moved my  fingers, I  felt the world
with a  maniac  laughter,  and  when   go dark all around  me, and I disap-
they   stopped    the   Wight   took   peared to reappear back in town.
something  from  its  robe.  "Here,"
said the Unlife Lord.                  I looked around, trying to regain my
                                       bearings. I was bleeding very badly,
The old  man took  the black  scroll   too faint to try to tend my leg.  My
and looked  at his  master, puzzled.   fingers moved again, my life drained
"What is  this, Lord?" he asked.       and  my  blood froze.  Now  I  could
                                       get to the Temple  of Eissa, where a
"It is an enchantment that will make   skilled healer could restore my leg.
the golems  faster. This  step  will   Townspeople looked amused  as I hob-
force more  of  the  inhabitants  of   bled tiredly to the Temple.
Kelfour's to join us."
                                       After I was healed, I stayed in town
I felt  anger. So  that is  what has   for a couple of weeks, spending time
happened to  the golems,  I thought.   at  Helga's,  pondering  how  Unlife
That is  where the  new deadly chest   almost took my life and how it saved
traps came  from. I knew that it was   me. Sometimes I wonder if the Powers
beyond a  gray orc  to  create  time   have already taken my life.  Well, I
rifts,    explosive    bombs,    and   better make  my way  to Helga's  and
electrical rods.                       drink some wine.  It helps.
I shifted  my weight  and stepped on      ==============\\==============
some some  branches. The  Wight Lord
turned and  looked directly at me. I   My Coming   [Continued from Page 14]
was still invisible, but suddenly it   ~~~~~~~~~
moved its  spectral  hands,  drawing   course,  now that I read it again, I
signs in  the air. My spell crumbled   realize  my  reckoning  of time will
and   I became  visible. The old man   mean little to you, especially those
acted  with  unbelievable  swiftness   who do not descend from Elven stock.
and hurled  a Lightningbolt at me. I   But perhaps I can provide some small
was able  to avoid it, but the Wight   assistance  in  this matter:  a Drow
Lord then  moved  into  position  to   shanra  is  called by you a 'day.' A
strike me with the Slay-Knife.         cushanra  is  roughly  equivalent to
                                       your week.  A lemshan corresponds to
Without a  weapon, I  feared for  my   your  concept  of  'month.' Finally,
life. I  did  not  look  forward  to   culem  can  be translated as 'year.'
spending my afterlife as a Wraith. I   Smaller  or larger units of time are
started  moving   my   fingers   and   not  significant in this account, as
drawing in the air. At the same time   I  did  not  bother  to write things
I gestured,  and called  upon all my   hour by hour, nor did I look further
protective  spells.   The   creature   than the current culem -- excuse me,
lunged to  attack, and I sidestepped   I  shall  try  to  conform  to  your
it.                                    standards  of  reckoning.  Indeed, I
                                       did not look beyond the current day,
Now it  was my  turn. I took a metal   as  I  found  early  on that looking
wand and pointed it at the Wight and   forward  or  back  too far did me no
a ball of ice struck it on the head.   good.
I took  the opportunity to run south
as fast  I could.  I got to the door   One more item I might mention before
with the old man and the Wight on my   I  start:   In my accounts in future
heels. As  I wrestled with the door,   issues, you will find tales of how I
I felt pain in my leg.  My  leg  was   came  to  be  called the Unbeliever,
gone! The  old man  took my  leg off   and  also  of  the White Gold that I
with a  Firebolt, hoping  to slow me   profess to bear.
                            Love Mourns Eternal
 _______________            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
/ \ ____    ____\            by Elyria Blythe
\@| +|~| __ |~|+|
  |  |~|/~~\|~| |
 _|  |~/~/\~\~| | e were  happy,  my   and  fed each other morsels from our
/@| _|__/  \__|_| love and I,  to be   basket. We were so hopelessly young.
\_/_____________/ together   sitting
on  the  rooftop gazing at the stars   After  our  meal  we decided to walk
in  the  velvety  black  night  sky.   through the surrounding countryside.
Tonight  he was explaining to me the   The  woods  were  particularly plea-
legend  of Altair and Deneb.  He had   sant,  sunlight winking through  the
taken  it upon himself to educate me   trees  as  we  walked.   But then we
in  the  lore of the world around us   happened  by  a graveyard.  The sun-
and of the stars.             ____________________________________________
                              \                                           \
I  was enthralled by his tale, |                Eternity                   |
weaver  of stories that he is, |                ~~~~~~~~                   |
and   could   almost  see  the | You're here, my love. You're mine at last.|
images  he  drew.   But  as he | Yet you're just beyond my grasp.          |
spoke,   a  creeping  darkness | I fear that you will slip away            |
came  over  me and the name of | Like all the times of yesterday.          |
Altair  began  echoing  in  my |                                           |
mind.                          | My past lives come at night to haunt me.  |
                               | Visions which show to me the tree         |
'Altair..  Altair..,' it whis- | Where last I helplessly watched you die   |
pered.   I  fell deeper into a | Shrieking soundlessly in my mind.         |
whirling  vortex, immobile and |                                           |
confused.  When I became aware | An old soothsayer once told me true       |
again,  I  was walking hand in | My soul's irrevocably bound to you.       |
hand  with  my love, exploring | We'll wander through the eons while       |
part  of  the lands we had not | Devils come to steal our smiles.          |
yet visited.  We were so young |                                           |
and foolish.                   |   Screaming endlessly through the years   |
                               |   Never able to staunch the fears         |
It  was when I looked fully at |   Of never having your hand in mine       |
him  that  the  first  jarring |   Without early death to end our time.    |
note entered my idyllic state. |                                           |
His  was  not  the  face of my | I cannot hide my heart from you;          |
love,  and  yet it was!  Stun- | It's not a case of win or lose.           |
ned,  I  whirled in confusion, | Our minds and souls are bound forever     |
my  mind coming to rest on one | Needing neither ring nor tether.          |
absolute   fact:   I  was  not |                                           |
Elyria, and he was not Baram.  | The love we share is very strong,         |
                               | Perhaps enough to break the bond          |
I sensed the weight of eons of | That holds you ever apart from me         |
ancient  layers  of  life upon | And keeps us from our destiny.            |
us.  We were many, we two, and |                                           |
had  been together through the | Maybe now I've reached my goal            |
centuries.  It was then that I | With my heart unblemished, whole.         |
began  to shiver, knowing what | Finding now what once was lost,           |
was to come...                 | Despite the very painful cost.            |
                               |                                           |
My  name was Sage, my love was |   Screaming endlessly through the years   |
Kel, and we were  walking to a |   Never able to staunch the fears         |
willow tree, the  perfect set- |   Of never having your hand in mine       |
ting for the picnic we had pre-|   Without early death to end our time.    |
pared.  We laughed  and talked |___________________________________________|
                                   -17-                              More...
light  there  was mottled and lent a   I  came aware to find myself crying,
diseased  look  to  the  ground, the   held  tightly  by my love.  His hur-
tombstones  and  crypts.   He was so   ried caresses and attempts to soothe
unaware  of  his  fate.  From out of   me  were of no avail.  He understood
nowhere,  wight lords and their min-   when  I  could  not vocalize my con-
ions  sprang  up around us.  We were   dition  and  pressed the matter not,
totally  unprepared  and  took  many   reassuring me as best he could.
strikes.   Only after a particularly
severe strike to Kel were we able to   A  few  nights  hence we returned to
get  away, him half stumbling, and I   the rooftop at my request, for I had
half dragging him.                     a gift for him.  Having no other way
                                       to  explain,  I had composed a song,
We  made  it as far as the willow we   and it was then that I sang it.
had  passed  earlier in our journey.
It was there he died in my arms, his   He  held me tightly after, and began
last  words a whisper forever etched   remembering  as  well.   We can only
on  my  mind.  'I love you Sage, now   hope  that armed with this knowledge
and  for  always, I love you...' And   we  can  find some way to break this
he  was  gone.   Echoing  through my   curse upon us.  To be forever doomed
mind were shrieks against this fate,   to have my love die early, to wander
for  I  knew not whether it was mine   through  the centuries never attain-
or  his.   Such had been our a close   ing satisfaction, was anathema.
mental bond.
                                       We  have  returned  to  that rooftop
In  shock  and  desolation I built a   since,  but  never  mentioned Altair
bier  to  place  his  body  on,  and   and Deneb.
watched  as  his flesh burned, sick-
ened  by  the  oversweet smell.  The   My  fair love is gone from the lands
flames  mesmerized  me,  drew me in,   now.   Even  knowing  has not helped
and  calmed  my  mind.  They drew me   break  the  bonds  of the curse upon
deeper and deeper in until I started   us.  Is it not ironic that just when
to  once again fall into that whirl-   we found our fate, it struck again?
ing vortex of blackness.
                          ___====-_  _-====___
                    _--^^^#####//      \\#####^^^--_
                 _-^##########// (    ) \\##########^-_
                -############//  |\^^/|  \\############-
              _/############//   (@::@)   \\############\_
             /#############((     \\//     ))#############\
            -###############\\    (oo)    //###############-
           -#################\\  / ** \  //#################-
          -###################\\/      \//###################-
         _#/|##########/\######(   /\   )######/\##########|\#_
         |/ |#/\#/\#/\/  \#/\##\  |  |  /##/\#/  \/\#/\#/\#| \|
         '  |/  V  V  '   V  \#\| |  | |/#/  V   '  V  V  \|  '
            '   '  '      '   / | |  | | \   '      '  '   '
                             (  | |  | |  )
                            __\ | |  | | /__
                 "The Terror that FLAPS in the night!"
 ____________                     Regrets
/ \      __  \                    ~~~~~~~
\@|     / "| |                by Feckly Fecund
  |    //|"| |
 _|   //=|"| |  halfling  sat  by  a   do  love the feel of fired clay, and
/@|  //  |"| |  barroom door, having   I'd rather use a nice bowl shaped by
\_/ ~~   ~~~ /  smoked too  much and   hand  for  the hand than an awkward,
  ~~~~~~~~~~~   eaten even more.  On   outsized flagon or mug.
achieving  that state of contentment
so  tirelessly  sought  by  mankind,   "That was my state of mind  when the
disdained  and derided by  dwarfdom,   venturers came in.
and  long acclaimed  as the  natural
and normal  state of being by  every   "You wouldn't  think to look at them
elf  queried  on  the matter, he let   that such  flashy fops, dandies with
his musings wax unusually philosoph-   their loud colors, braided boots and
ical. Ere long, he was contemplating   jeweled splendor,  even  knew  which
the  meaning of  life, politics, why   end of  the sword to hold, let alone
anyone  would  eat  a  chest,  where   how to  use it.  I pondered epigrams
hobgoblins  go when they  crumble to   to describe the party for my diary--
dust...                                a moraine  mass, a  cute and  cuddly
                                       clutch, perhaps a grandiose gaggle--
This is how he started his story:      when quite  by accident  I overheard
                                       this conversation:
"Who  are  these near mythical lords
from  the recent yet still-dark past   "'Barkeep, my fellows and I seek the
of  Kulthea?  Were Lythe and Allanon   services  of an acquisitional engin-
and  the rest diligent and misunder-   eer, a burglar of little renown  but
stood  citizens of the land, or mere   unmatched  skill, to accompany us on
dilletants,   or   would-be  tyrants   a  minor expedition.  Nothing overly
seeking to establish a chaotic hege-   dangerous  mind you, but a matter of
mony?   Young  I am, but I have seen   some delicacy.'
no  theft  in  temple or violence in
the streets.                           "He was  a brute  of a  man,  almost
                                       seven  feet  tall.  I  did  have  to
"Aye, there are the occasional unex-   listen harder  when he  leaned  over
plained  losses  and  pockets  found   and whispered to the bartender, 'And
mysteriously empty that jingled with   it would  help if  he  were  one  of
coin  only minutes before.  It is to   those  little   people,  to   better
be expected when risk-takers gather,   manage any confining spaces.'
a small price to pay for freedom.  I
hear  that  when  the daring Deering   "'Good sir,' I squeaked past my grin
walked  the lands, lords and newbies   'may  I inquire as to what one might
alike  were  apt  to wake up missing   expect  by  way of compensation were
their  family  jewels,  and,  I have   he  to  accept the position you just
heard, often more.  But I digress.     mentioned?'
"This was an evening much like every   "The   following  negotiation   took
other at Helga's -- an evening for a   little time, which was just as well,
steady  flow  of  bowls.  I'd had my   since we departed the  next  morning
bowls of torkaan stew with a bowl of   at an unnaturally early hour.  There
mead  to wash them down.  Now it was   was  hardly  time to break  my  fast
time  to  try  a  few  bowls of this   with a  snack  of muffins  and  jam,
delicious  pipe  weed I'd found in a   sausages, eggs, buttered hominy  and
forgotten  cache  in  the  catacombs   a pot of tea.
(rough  work,  clearing the varmints
that  infest the lower realms of the   "The trip was uneventful.  Even with
city), perchance partaking of a bowl   the  caravan  that drug out for what
of  the  fine brandy served here.  I   seemed  leagues, we couldn't attract
                                   -19-                             More...
the  attention of anything the smal-   else did,  maybe a  little less (the
lest  bit unsavory.  I was hoping to   low angle, you know).  It might have
be  ambushed by brigands at the very   been that lack of data that prompted
least.   The  leader,  Lord Ruggles,   me to  ask the  vital  question,  'I
came back to collect me.  He says to   wonder what  goes in  those  holes?'
me, 'Come help search for the trail.   Everyone else could clearly see they
Our  map  says  the  old  guild road   were  filled   with  leaves,  trash,
branches off somewhere near here.'     bric-a-brac; a pack rat's hoard, but
                                       nothing that  glittered  to  attract
"Well, I saw the same thing everyone   any attention...
[Trail Side Climb]
The trail winds along a precarious, weather-smoothed cliff face. Having done
her  best  to  wear  away all but the most impervious bone of this mountain,
leaving  a glassy face only sporadically marred by pock marks, Mother Nature
now turns her will and winds on hapless travelers who happen by.
The  chill  gusts  whip at your coat tails and bites at your heels, dragging
the  unwary,  and the unwilling as well, closer to the doom that awaits them
on the other hand.  Ahead lies another bend and the unknown.
Upon searching, you discover unnaturally round holes in the cliff face eight
feet  up  or  so.   The  holes are filled with litter, and they appear to be
drilled  into  the  wall  six  to  eight  inches and angled down.  There are
obvious exits to the north and south.
[Hidden Ledge]
Fifty feet or so above the trail is a near-invisible niche. At about the two
foot level, the setting sun strikes glints from its wall.  Closer inspection
reveals,  written in halfling in what appears to be diamond dust, "Push here
to no avail, but accept this token of friendship and good fellowship."
As  you  press upward on the words, a section of the wall swings up and back
to  expose  an archway which is finely carved and proportioned--all of three
feet tall--opening onto a stair leading into the dark heart of the mountain.
The only way back seems to be the way you came.
You  are  on  a  landing  at the top of a dark stone stairway.  The way down
looks  strange  to you.  It's not a trick of the light from the lichen along
the  walls; the steps do appear particularly made for children.  You see the
mechanism for the not-so-secret side of a secret door here.
[Secret Door, Landing]
This landing is at the bottom of two stairwells. Which to choose?  Both wind
into  the  darkness.  There is also a small round wooden door.  There appear
to be no other exits.
This  was  once  obviously  a  nice  place to rest up, but the sofa and easy
chairs  have  long  since  been splintered.  The cushions have been rent and
their  innards  strewn  about.   The  legs of chairs and tables are mixed in
amongst  the  calciferous remains of once-living animal legs.  A small round
wooden door appears to be the only exit.
[Tunnel End]
A  stairway  and  tunnel meet here.  The stairs lead  little-step-by-little-
step further into the bowels of the mountain.  The tunnel seems to trail off
into darkness.
You are escorted here by endless ranks of unused sconces.
[Tunnel end]
This  is  the  juncture of a large cavern and a dark tunnel which disappears
into  the mountain.  The packed dirt floor of the tunnel interfaces with the
flagstone flooring that paves the cavern.
[Halls of the Mountain King]
This  cavern  clearly  once contained an extensive keep.  The dusty bones of
blasted  buildings  litter the landscape.  Around the periphery, minor shops
and  hovels  have partially survived, no doubt because they were imbedded in
the  cavern  walls.  Your gaze is drawn to a structure in the center of this
cavern,  if  for  no other reason than its completeness in the midst of such
desolation.  This building looks to be built of living rock.  If seams there
are,  the  joins  of  its  stones were magically faced, perhaps melded.  The
windows  and  door  facing  you  have been made part of the rope relief that
adorns it.  The play of light and grey on the two high windows remind you of
roses.  The only exit appears to be the tunnel to the west.
[Radagast Rope Company, Ropery]
The  entire  face of this building is decorated with etchings of strings and
cords  and rope.  There are double doors outlined in heavy cabling, no doubt
good  for  rope  bridges  in  hemp manifestations, with knots for hinges and
knobs.   The windows, though not dainty, are bordered in rope and twine just
the right size for mountain- and dungeoneering.  Too bad they are all rock.
[Radagast Rope Company, Display Room]
A stela greets you here.  This could represent the nature of life or commem-
orate the first transaction of this establishment, or perhaps someone simply
thought  it  would look nice here.  The stela is a marble relief of merchant
and customer, obviously depicting the exchange of a coin purse for a rope of
some  kind.  The remainder of the room seems dedicated to irregular piles of
dust and what must be the petrified remains of half burned furnishings.
An archway and nondescript black door occupy the north wall.  Unobtrusive to
the  point  of going almost unnoticed, small doorways partially covered with
tattered  hangings occur in both the east and west walls.  An ebony door and
a large plaque dominate one wall.  There is a double door in the south wall,
lighted  by  a  glowing emerald-colored sign.  The plaque is boldly printed,
"PRIVATE!   Authorized  Personnel Only".  In the Common language, and appar-
ently a number of tongues you don't recognize, the emerald sign reads, "This
Way Out."
                           __    __
                          (  )__(  )
                          /\ @   @/\         "SQEAK!...
                         /  \:  :/  \
    (___________________|    \()/    |        "Was that KOBOLD Kabobs!?"
                          V V    V V
                      Symbols and Lies  (Conclusion)
 ______________          by Lord Whilder Planrathe
/ \ ____  ____ \
\@| ~| |  | |~ |
  |  |~|--|~|  | ere,"   she   said,   Trolls. Not his father. Not his bro-
 _|  |~|--|~|  |slapping the hilt of   ther. Just two trolls. Or more lies?
/@| _|~|  |~|_ |the  broadsword into
\_/ ~~~~  ~~~~ /his hand.  "You  may   Momentarily,  his  father's  ghostly
  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~  need  this  if  any   form   appeared,    attempting    to
more trolls arrive."                   displace the troll.  The lips moved,
                                       though no  sound issued.   The elven
Whilder looked back down at the body   form    wavered   and   disappeared,
of his father. It seemed to blur, as   leaving  only the body of the troll.
though  two  beings  were  trying to   Whilder  did  not  need  to hear the
occupy  the  same space.  Harsh out-   words  spoken by his father's image.
lines  of  a troll combatted for the   He  knew  what his father was trying
space  occupied  by  the  fair  elf.   to tell him.
Neither seemed to win.
"Yes," sighed Whilder, looking away.
He closed  his hand  around the worn   "Well, mage, just what is this great
hilt, adjusting  his grip.   Not too   decision  you've come to?" she asked
tight, or  the  force  of  the  blow   lightly.   He was on his feet again,
could numb  his own arm or break his   talking  and  aware of his true sur-
own wrist.   Not  too loose,  so the   roundings.   She  thought the danger
sword could  not be knocked from his   was past.
hand  or  turn wrong when he struck.
Just as  his father  had trained him   "I  haven't  made  a  decision.  Not
to hold the weapon.                    yet."  Whilder stepped away from the
                                       body, shifting his sword to his left
She  stood  and waited.  After a few   hand.   Slowly  he began a series of
moments,  Whilder  began to struggle   gestures,  murmuring  arcane  words.
to  his  feet.   She  reached out to   Turning in a slow circle he repeated
help him stand.                        the words, so softly that even elven
                                       ears could not discern them.
"What  brings   you  to  this  spot,
mage?" she asked.                      As he completed his circle, he stop-
                                       ped  and  thrust his right hand into
"I...I needed  to make  a  decision.   the  air,  palm  aiming straight up.
This seemed  as good  a place as any   "I  seek the one!" he cried.  Energy
for it.  And you?"                     leapt  up,  spreading into a circle,
                                       an  invisible wave cresting outward.
She hesitated for a moment.  "I have   Whilder lowered his arm, and shifted
decided to try my weapon against the   his sword back into his right hand.
minions  of   Hrassk,"  she  finally
replied,  pointing  toward  a  trail   "What spell was that?"
that  was  dark  even  in  the  late
afternoon sun.                         "A  variation  of Call Familiar," he
Whilder looked  into her  green eyes
and saw  a hint  of pain.  Startled,   "Variation?"
he realized  she had  just  lied  to
him.   If she  was lying  about  her   "Yes.   Normally  the  Call Familiar
real reason  for being here, perhaps   spell  allows  the mage to bond with
she was lying about the bodies.        an animal that he can control.  This
                                       spell should just bring an animal in
Whilder looked  again at the bodies.   response  to  its  call.  The animal
                                   -22-                             More...
that  answers  this call will deter-   up on this foolishness soon.
mine my future."
                                       "What  do  you  know  of your birth-
"How  will it determine your future?   mark?"
Will  it  walk  up  to  you  and say
'Hello, Whilder.  You ought to go on   "Not much," admitted Whilder.  "Just
studying the arts of magic?'"          that  it  happens to be in the shape
                                       of the old sign for luck. The super-
"No," answered  Whilder.  "Something   stitious   claimed  any  other  name
about it  will tell me what I should   would  bring  doom upon the village.
do, what course I should take."        That doom arrived anyway."
"How?"  she  exclaimed, wondering if   "Perhaps  not,"  she  said.  "Think.
the mage had fully recovered.          Some  of  your  village  escaped the
                                       slaughter.  You did.  And maybe more
Whilder sighed.  "I  do  not know. I   than you believe could have escaped.
trust myself to the whims of fate."    It  was  not  a  total  slaughter of
                                       life,  not if even one escaped.  And
"Wild  luck" she murmured.  "True to   one did escape.  You."
your name." Then louder, "What could
answer your spell-call?"               She  turned  to  look at him, but he
                                       was  still watching the setting sun.
"Oh,   typical   animals,"   Whilder   "It  was  first  called  the  Chance
replied,  watching  as the sun began   symbol  because  those  born with it
to  touch the horizon.  "Cats, dogs,   seemed  to  take  risks others would
falcons..."                            not contemplate.  However, it seemed
                                       that these folk were always winning,
"And  some  not-so-typical  ones,  I   always   coming   out  unscathed  or
take it."                              richer  for  the  chances they took.
                                       It  soon  started  being  called the
"Most   certainly,"   said  Whilder,   Luck  symbol,  for  those  same folk
looking  back  at  the  guardswoman.   seemed to have an infinite source of
"Maybe  a  torkaan, or a brown bear.   luck  at their command.  It became a
Possibly  even  a  cockatrice.   The   superstition  that a child born with
spell  just  requires that an animal   the symbol must be named after it or
answer it, not necessarily an animal   the  luck  would  turn  against  the
that  the mage could control through   bearer and those around him."
the spell."
                                       Was  he  hearing  her, she wondered?
"And  once  this  messenger arrives?   He  seemed lost, staring at the sun-
What happens then?"                    set.   She  wanted to grab and shake
                                       him until his teeth rattled, but she
Whilder  looked  over at the setting   felt  that  was not the answer.  She
sun.   "I  believe I will become one   waited  a  moment for a response but
with  the  animal, for a few moments   received  only  silence.   She  con-
anyway.   I  will not control it nor   tinued  her  explanation,  hoping he
it  me.   If I am correct, our iden-   heard, hoping he understood.
tities will be as one.  If something
happens  to it during that time, the   "As the tales go, it became known as
same will happen to me.  Please take   Rampant Luck during a small war bet-
no actions, no matter what occurs."    ween  two kingdoms.  Three warriors,
                                       all  born with the luck sign, held a
The  guardswoman  turned  nervously,   pass  against  an  entire army.  Not
scanning  the area for anything that   one  enemy did they themselves slay.
could  be  a threat to them.  Such a   Not  one  arrow  did they nock.  And
spell  could  not work, she thought.   not  one  wound or injury did any of
She  needed to get him talking about   the   three   receive.    Yet  their
something else.  Maybe he would give   enemies were decimated and retreated
                                   -23-                             More...
from the field of battle."             in  until  after they were well into
                                       the archers' formations.  The bodies
"How?" asked Whilder.  "How could an   of  the  archers caused many a mount
entire  army  be decimated and never   to  fall,  lashing  out  at anything
have come to battle?"                  near it.  Since the mounted soldiers
                                       had bunched together to ride through
She   felt  a  wave  a  relief  pass   what  was supposed to be open space,
through her.  He was listening, even   the  fallen  horses  kicked  out  at
if  he  was  staring at the half-set   other  mounts.   The  struck  mounts
sun.   "Well, here's the tale that I   lashed  back  at  anything  near  or
think is closest to the truth:         around  them.   The archers that had
                                       not  become trapped in the confusion
"They  used  a  typical  deployment.   quickly  moved away and bunched into
Common foot soldiers advanced first,   small, unorganized groups.
in  order to draw the enemy archers'
fire   and  reveal  their  position.   "One  of the officers among the foot
Their  own archers, neatly formed up   soldiers  glanced  back  and saw the
a distance behind the foot soldiers,   melee  behind him.  Fearing that the
then  rushed  up  to send vollies of   enemy  had somehow gotten behind and
arrows into the enemy positions.       within  the ranks of the archers, he
                                       blew  the  signal for retreat on his
"The  foot  soldiers then made their   horn.   The foot soldiers spread out
way  to  the base of the small moun-   even  further  trying  to stop their
tains   flanking   the   pass  under   headlong  charge.  Before they could
protection  of  their  own  archers.   reform  and make an orderly retreat,
Once  there,  a  signal was given to   many  had  seen  the  growing  chaos
the  mounted  soldiers.  The archers   within their own ranks of archers.
were  to  open  ranks at the signal,
allowing  the mounted soldiers past,   "Words  were  quickly shouted.  Many
then  close  up  again  and continue   mistook  the  confusion to mean that
their barrage of missiles.             the enemy had managed to get a large
                                       force  behind  them.   With cries of
"The mounted soldiers rode as far as   encouragement  to  each  other  they
they  could,  dismounted,  and began   began  a  disorganized  charge  back
attacking   the   enemy.   The  foot   toward their own lines.
soldiers  followed,  reinforcing the
mounted  soldiers  who  would not be   "Several  of  the  archers  who  had
tired  from  the  ride,  as the foot   escaped  the  carnage  within  their
soldiers would be from their charge.   ranks   looked   back   toward   the
But things went wrong...               mountain.   Not  much  could be seen
                                       through  the  dust and haze that now
"Battle   horns   sounded  from  the   filled the air around them.  Nothing
mountain,  startling flocks of birds   could be heard over the noise behind
which  launched  themselves from the   them.   All  they  saw  were figures
mountain.   The foot soldiers charg-   racing  toward  them, figures waving
ed,  thinking  them, survivors later   weapons.   Quickly,  several  of the
claimed, to be arrows fired by enemy   surviving   archers   began  sending
bowmen.   The mounted soldiers, con-   arrows  at  the charging men.  Other
fused by the echoes of the horns and   archers noticed these few and joined
shouting,   charged.   The  archers,   the  barrage, each thinking that the
amused  that  the foot soldiers were   others   had   identified   the  men
panicked  by  birds, never heard the   charging them as the enemy.
approach  of  the  mounted  soldiers
until  they crashed into the rear of   "It  was  considered  pure,  rampant
their own formations.                  luck   that   stopped  the  invading
                                       army."  She  moved  around  to stand
"The mounted soldiers had just built   between  Whilder and his view of the
up  to full speed and could not rein   sunset.   "It  was good luck for the
                                   -24-                             More...
three  protectors,  bad luck for the   He had his answer.
invaders.  Not just one kind of luck
or  the  other.   And  not something   "Mage?"  she  asked, concern evident
that  could  be  called on, could be   in her voice.
relied on at all times."
                                       "Tell  me," he whispered, looking up
A  sadness  reflected  in  her eyes.   from  his  hand.   "Tell  me why you
"Two  of  the  three died in another   really came to this spot tonight."
battle but scant days later."
                                       She looked into his eyes.  "I do not
Whilder felt his spell ebb, begin to   know, truthfully.  I only knew I was
fade, as she finished her story.  "I   needed.  That I would be useful." No
have  failed  again," he said.  "The   pain  reflected  in  her  eyes  this
spell ends without answer."            time.   No  lies.  He glanced at the
                                       two    bodies,   shrouded   in   the
The guardswoman looked solemnly into   darkness.  No lies.
his  light grey eyes.  "Not failed,"
she said.  "You tried, and trying is   Whilder  readied  his  shield.  "I'm
never  failure."  And  even  as  she   going  back  to  the Landing.  Would
spoke, she watched the intelligence,   you like to walk with me, Chance?"
the   very  spark  of  life  itself,
suddenly leave those eyes.             "No,  I..," and the look of surprise
                                       on her face was priceless.  "How did
She  saw  only the eyes of the dead.   you   know?"  she  stammered.   "You
Shocked,  she  gasped  and  drew her   couldn't  have  seen..." The crimson
weapon. Quickly she looked about for   glow from her face outshone the sun-
an  attacker  who  could have killed   set that occurred but moments ago.
the mage while she spoke to him.
                                       Whilder   smiled  and  turned  away,
The wolf growled, grey fur bristling   starting  his  trek  back  to  town.
along  its  back.   He was confused.   From  the darkness his voice drifted
One moment he had been following the   back to her.
scent  of  his  prey,  the  next, it
seemed,  he  was  far  away from his   "My  birth-name  is Wild Luck.  That
normal  hunting  grounds.   For long   is how I knew."
moments   he   watched  the  strange
figures.   One stood still as death.
The  other  crouched and waved some-                Epilogue
thing at him, making strange noises.
The  scent of death drifted from two   She  stood  in the darkness watching
other forms on the ground.             as  Orhan  rose, waxing full against
                                       the  night  sky.   Even as the light
Abruptly,  the  wolf  spun and left,   from the home of the Gods brightened
running  back  toward his home, back   the   night,   she  seemed  to  grow
to his hunt.                           indistinct.   Slowly her form became
                                       like gossamer, fading from sight...
Whilder's   world  suddenly  snapped
into  place.   A world of color, not   And she was gone.
the  shades of grey seen through his
eyes moments ago...                    Long moments passed after she disap-
                                       eared.   Then,  like a distant sigh,
No, not his eyes. The wolf's eyes.     came two words barely whispered, the
                                       speaker indistinct, unidentifiable.
Whilder  looked  down  at  his right
hand  still gripping his sword.  His   "He knows."
vision  shifted  beyond his fingers,
beyond  the hilt in his hand, to the   Or...perhaps...  perhaps it was just
birthmark on his own palm.             the evening breeze.
                           Corruption in Kulthea
 ___________              by Miss Louvella Parsnips
/ \ ______  \
\@| ~|_|~\\ | ecadence   abounds  in   understand  that  he  presented  her
  |  |~|  ||| Kulthea this month  as   with an  enormous   and disgustingly
 _|  |~|  ||| we discovered, much to   gaudy  engagement   ring   and  she,
/@|  |~|_// | our distress,  disgust   having no better sense, accepted the
\_/ ~~~~~~  / and chagrin.             tawdry ring.
As usual, our bleu  robed magess has   Of   course,   given   this   garish
been up  to  no  good, flaunting her   healer's substantial  collection  of
considerable wares through  the town   ornate,  gaudy and rather inappropr-
in a display of vulgar   exhibition-   iate engagement  rings, we wonder if
ism. It  seems   that this  depraved   this   wedding will ever take place,
trollop  strolled  through  the town   despite  the  too   obvious  and too
attracting,  like  fleas  to  a dog,   passionate amounts of smooching  and
several of  Kelfour's desperate, and   cooing going on about town. It reeks
not  very  bright,  young   lads. We   of deception to us. We wonder if our
were shocked to learn that following   young  ranger  will  ever   be  seen
this lewd demonstration,  la  magess   again. We wonder indeed.
led  the    unfortunate  fellows  to
Frick's newly refurbished  suite for   While  we  are  on  the  subject  of
a  night  of   immoral,  crude   and   inappropriate  behavior,   we   have
lascivious entertainment.              learned that our lady  cleric of the
                                       old speeche  and   the  multitude of
Naturally, the magess' henpecked and   members of her family  have formed a
desperate husband  decided   that he   new   society,    BUM,    which   we
too  would  stroll through the town,   understand  stands   for   Break  Up
au natural, in the hopes of attract-   Monopolies. We have no idea what the
ing  some of Kelfour's  harlot-like,   nature of  this   new  society could
and brainless, damsels  and  thereby   stand  for,   but   we    are rather
enjoying  a   depraved  night of his   suspicious that  BUM   really stands
own.  Unfortunately, no one paid any   for Break Up Marriages,  however, we
attention  to  this  poor fellow (no   would not dream of being as tacky as
one, that is,  except us) and he was   to   actually  accuse our la clan of
forced to spend the evening  indulg-   such  filthy   and devious behavior,
ing in solitary entertainment.  This   would we?
being so, it does not surprise us in
the least that  la  magess must look   Until  next   time,  gentle  reader,
elsewhere.                             stay decent and tra-la for now!
We have also learned  that Kelfour's    ==================================
favorite mad mage  has  undergone an   |  THE SOCIETY FOR MORAL DECENCY   |
experimental  operation  offered  by   |     -= MEMBERSHIP DRIVE =-       |
Surtey Akrash. Of  course,  we would   |__________________________________|
not be  so  crass  as  to detail the   |                                  |
manner of the operation,  but let us   |    Calling all decent, moral     |
just assure you that he is no longer   |  upright, rather goody-goody     |
a lord...or a he.                      |    and otherwise uncorrupt       |
                                       |          ADVENTURERS             |
Tacky seems to be the operative word   |    *************************     |
of late and tacky best describes the   |   Help us wipe out depravity     |
impending wedding  between   a young   |      in Kelfour's Landing        |
half-elf  ranger   and    the  newly   |      Join the SPMD today!        |
returned  from   exile   healer.  We   |__________________________________|

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