Part 30: Update XXVIII - Goondalf the G(host) (Not)Part XXVIII - Goondalf the G(host) (Not)
Yes, we've just completed a big mission, but we crave more! Goondalf has no time for such petty things as rest. Especially not with whatever is about to happen based on that cover.
Let's go see the mission boy.
This assignment is not a stealth mission, so along the way to see Elazar, we pick up our party members.
Still Phelic's Apprentice and Wyatt, of course. And Wyatt gets all the stealth gear we picked up last chapter.
Goondalf goes back to the armored wizard look, but only temporarily. Much more befitting garments are coming soon.
Here's how everyone's stats are looking.
Hello again buddy! Your favorite young mage is here!
What are the details of this portal, and what is required to make it work?
Through multiple enchantments, Elarath has managed to be able to place the area the portal will teleport to. It is a recent breakthrough that we are able to put anything through it at all. For quite some time, we thought the portal was merely eating everything we tried to pass through it, but I think it more likely that the portal transported everything we sent to where it originally led ages ago.
So what's the problem? If the portal works, what more do you need?
Should? That's not much of an endorsement.
We shall test it, of course, but I am making no guarantees! We shall pass a few more pieces of furniture through the portal. Once we are satisfied that the ring's enchantment has taken hold and is affecting the portal, we shall send some rats -- they shouldn't be hard to find -- through as well. It will be safe, or it will not be used.
And what is it you wish for me to do?
I need you to go back to my tower and retrieve the ring from a chest in my chambers on the third floor. You need not worry about any defense mechanisms; although I have a few, they have not been triggered. Additionally, their nature is specific and almost intelligent, meaning that you cannot set them off. I cannot stress enough the importance of this item should Avalon fall; think of all the lives lost if we do not.
Why think of those to die? Think instead of the lives saved if the portal works when we should need it.
I am confident in my abilities and shall succeed, Elazar. You shall have your opportunity to complete the portal.
I am confident in your abilities as well, it is merely customary to wish someone good luck. I was attempting to be courteous.
In that case, I apologize, Seer, but there is one more question I must ask before I can continue.
Of course! I forgot to tell you how you are supposed to get into my tower, since it has been sealed! There is a tree immediately outside my tower with a magical spell set to trigger when someone touches a branch on it. It is difficult to identify, but I've no doubt you will manage to find it.
Thank you, Elazar. I will return shortly with your ring.
"Shortly", sure. What kind of game do you think this is, Goondalf? We have tons of people to talk to first!
Starting with this guy, right outside the Seer's room.
I hear that my brother has been quite busy, as well.
Correct. I haven't seen much of him lately. He must be doing some important work. So you are working with Elazar again?
Yes, I am, and it's not as unpleasant as you might believe it to be. I am to find a magical item that will help Elazar and Elarath create another, much more effective escape route, should Avalon be overrun.
Let us hope that we shall not require it.
Agreed. Farewell, Calum.
I mean, we probably should have learned not to blab about our missions by now, but Calum has a drawing in the journal. If that doesn't prove his trustworthiness, I don't know what would.
This guy has no portrait though, so we better be careful.
You bet, but how did you know that?
Soren: Because I figured you cleaned out the village, and you've a battle-weary look about you that's a bit more intense than last time. Say, have you been to the woods yet? Spoken to an ELF yet?
Yes, actually, I've spoken to a few of them. Why do you ask?
Soren: Is it true that they have pointy teeth and forked tongues?
That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard!
Soren: Well, maybe, but they do have horns, right? That's why their clothes won't fit, that's what momma said. Said stay away from the forest, or the Elves will come and take your life... Or... Or WORSE.
Ludicrous. Your mother was mistaken! The elves may look a little different, but all of that is... fairy tales! Such xenophobia! What, outside of madness, could get a person to believe such a...
Soren: Oh, well, sure. I mean, you're the expert and all.
No offense. Farewell, soldier.
What's the word here, Lang?
Lang: I'd choose "despair," sir. Living just this side of oblivion is hard toil on a man's mind.
That it is, soldier, but if we succumb to such despair, the Sha'ahoul won't have to defeat us, because we will have defeated ourselves already.
Whoa that's deep man.
It's all in the wrist, you see.
[Draw your weapon and play along]
Grimbold: [a few minutes later...] Haha! That was bad acting, but brilliant fighting, my friend. I bet the plainsman scouts tremble in the bushes when you pass.
I hope they are foolish enough to make themselves known. More bald bushmen in the open means less mud on my boots.
Grimbold: Haha! That's more like it, friend! We will defeat these cretins soon enough!
Take care, Grimbold.
We actually get 4 TP for doing that. There's a great bug here too, if we were inclined to CHEAT... We can repeat this conversation as much as we want, earning another 4 TP each time we play along.
At least he's not dreaming about the Firewalker.
Actually, I was just checking up on you.
Lucan: Don't tell anyone, but the Sha'ahoul frighten me. The wind carries their chantings into my window at night, and wakes me with a chill. I just know any morning now I'll awaken to an Ahoul sword at my throat.
One morning's light will bring us freedom, good Lucan. Don't give up hope, we need you.
Hey, it's daytime now! Truly no rest for a hero.
How do you know I'm not a ghost?
Theo: Hah... That's... not funny. Please leave me.
As you wish.
Excellent troll. :clap:
Hello again lovebirds.
Well enough. Perhaps you can settle a few issues for me.
Lahren: Consider me at your service, Goondalf the G. How can I help you?
I trust things are still well with you and Pell?
Lahren: I've tried not to bother her with my worries, but her recent sleeping troubles have me very concerned. More than once I've watched over her as she sleeps, only to witness her writhing terribly -- as if she were suffering tremendous pain and fear. Though she's kept up a good front, I can see in her eyes that she has become quite worn down. This invisible enemy is, in many ways, the most difficult thing we have ever faced together. Also, elements from Fornax still seek Pell.
That sounds terrible, Lahren. I must depart now. Farewell, and may the good spirits protect you.
To you also, Pell. How have you been faring as of late?
What do you believe your discomfiture is caused by?
I don't believe it was the food, or the lack of food. I think this malaise is caused by something magical, something mystical; I just haven't been able to set my eyes on it. Oh, do not worry for my sake, I will reason it out eventually.
Perhaps you should see a healer, Pell. None of us have eaten particularly well during our stay.
I don't really think it was the dreams I think I may have had, but I get a strange feeling about the Sha'ahoul. Perhaps they have something to do with it, but how? I sense a strange magical taint on my person. I feel rather separated...
I must confess that I do not know what ails you, Pell, and as I cannot help you, I...
Oh, do not fret for me, Goondalf the G. [smiles warmly] I will see what is causing this in due time. I think I shall question some of the other inhabitants of the keep about it; some of them have complained about troubling dreams, and it may be the same thing. Perhaps Elarath knows something about this. Oh, I am sorry to bother you with such mental wanderings.
As you wish, Pell. Farewell.
Don't you think you're being a mite paranoid?
The paranoid stay safe, Goondalf the G. Farewell.
It's been said before, but this place really is a madhouse.
Let's head into the Outer Keep.
If you're tired, you should chew on a tea leaf, soldier. It will keep you awake.
Guard Iven: Oh, sure. I'll just [yawn] pull out my Bag of Endless Tea Leaves and start gnawing away.
Please tell me this is an actual item that exists in this world. Want.
I see your point. It has been quite a while since any of us have been with the comforts of the lives we used to have before the cursed campfire.
Guard Iven: What would you know about that? You'r an officer and the brother of the famed Lieutenant Corvus!
What about my appearance fooled you, soldier? Was it my fingers bedecked with golden rings, my scepter studded with pearls? Was it the wake of a dozen personal attendants that seem to follow me everywhere?
To be fair, we do have a magical item in nearly every equipment slot and two
Guard Iven: Hah, good one, sir.
That's what I thought. Stay safe, soldier.
What sort of visions?
Friar Massus: I saw you as you cleft the heads from the devil's serpents that dares to trespass upon our holy grounds. Know that you travel a wide path, Goondalf the G, but you are purified by the waters of the chalice.
I only want to help, Friar. I do not seek the praises of men.
Yeah sure, whatever you say.
Friar Massus: The praises are well deserved my child. Your exploits have done much for us.
I am grateful for the life I have been granted. I intend not to waste it.
Really? And I've been trying to keep a low profile...
We're planning a surprise party for all of Avalon!
While we're in the neighborhood, I suppose we might as well do something plot-relevant and talk to the other wizard around these parts.
Elazar has given me an assignment to locate a ring for him that will enable you to activate the portal. He tells me you've made great strides with it so far.
Hmm, while it's true that Elazar and I have been working on the portal. I'm sure he's told you that our "strides" have come up a bit shorter than they must. Our belief is that the enchantment on his ring of Form Protection, which is largely used to protect one against polymorphing, can be transferred to the portal itself to protect anything passing through it. If it doesn't work, we'll simply try something else?
I understand, Elarath. Have you done such "enchantment transference" before?
Yes, in fact, but it doesn't always work how we wish it would... Magic is an imaginative force, you see, and sometimes it thinks of things that we don't. We're all very amused afterwards; that is, of course, if no one gets hurt. At least in this case we can be sure that it won't hurt a soul before it is employed.
Elazar had suggested rats...
Thank you for the information, Elarath. I will visit you again once I possess the ring.
Thank you, Goondalf the G, we'll try to make your efforts more fruitful than mere learning on our part. Oh, and one tidbit you might find interesting; one of the Magistrates of the Council of Fornax has arrived recently. His name is Khaele, and I have had dealing with him before. You can expect no trouble from him, but the fact that he is here signals that he wants something. He is still located in one of the tents in the Inner Bailey.
Do not worry, wise one; I have little doubt that you will discover something that will help us. Farewell.
Ooo, interesting. Maybe his assistant can tell us more, since Elarath can be a bit... forgetful.
Quite well, Sherard. How have you fared in the advancement of your studies?
Sherard: You may find it hard to believe, but I've actually advanced rather far recently. Though he can be forgetful, Elarath is nonetheless a fine teacher. Perhaps I could even teach you a thing or two.
Have you heard any interesting rumors, Sherard?
Ah, very helpful.
Well, this guy must be a big deal. For pacing reasons, we shall seek him out next time (and also talk to a few more people along the way)!
AVALON FASHION SHOW
Clashing is in this season/Chapter.
The combination of yellow tunic, plaid kilt, red tights, and black boots is sure to sweep the fashion-starved peasantry by storm.
Assuming any of them are still alive anyway, what with all the food-starving. But isn't fashion more important?