The Let's Play Archive

Ultima VII: The Black Gate

by Nakar

Part 25: The Black Gate - Slightly More Crazies Than Usual

Slightly More Crazies Than Usual

This update was way too long. I can't really help that. I got a little zoned out and just kept going. It turned out way longer than I expected. This is a pretty dull part of the game and I just had to kind of plod through it, but it'll kick back in pretty soon. Anyway, we've got some things to see!

Moonglow it is. The people here are largely uninteresting, except the stuttering farmhand you can piss off by picking conversation options where you stutter back. It's not plot-relevant and it makes me feel bad to do it, and that's kind of saying something for me.

"I'm getting kind of hungry."
"We can't expect every monster we fight to just turn into a meal on the spot, Dupre!"

"Well I'll be damned."

I love you, gremlins.

This huge building is the observatory, located roughly where it was in Ultima VI. It's slightly sexier, as you'll see.

You see a scholarly-looking man with a friendly expression.
"Salutations, Avatar." Brion smiles.
"And you're..."
"Why, thou mayest call me Brion. I am the head of the observatory here in Moonglow," he says proudly. "This is where the telescope is kept. Why, I love living here in Moonglow. I very much like the people here. Hast thou spoken with my twin, Nelson? He heads the Lycaeum. Or Elad? And surely thou knowest about the mage, Penumbra."
"Wait, did you say-"
"I do not see my brother as often as I would like, for we are so heavily involved with our work. He will be easy to recognize shouldst thou see him, for people tell us we look identical. I do not see it, of course, for, not only was he born with the brains, but also the handsome face."
"Yes but you mentioned-"
"Poor Elad. He sometimes joins me at night to view the heavens. He has been trying to leave Moonglow for many years. He likes the island, but is filled with wanderlust." He smiles.
"Yes but Penumbra, how is she still alive?"
"Thou hast not heard? Why, two hundred years ago she put herself to sleep."
"You can do that?"
"Apparently you can do that."
"I have a telescope upstairs, of course. Thou art welcome to use it as often as thou wishest. In fact, I also have an orrery, shouldst thou desire to see that as well."
"That sounds familiar. Weren't they building that thing two hundred years ago?"
"The orrery? Why, 'tis a model of all the planets in our solar system, including the two moons of Britannia. The orrery moves to match the actual, current orbits of our real system. I am very excited, for shortly a very rare event will occur!"
"What's that?"
"What we in the business call the Astronomical Alignment. The planets and the moons will all line up perfectly, something that happens only once every 800 years!"
"That sounds ominous."
"Really? It seems rather benign to me."
"We should probably get going before whatever is about to happen with that happens."
"Before thou dost depart, let me show thee a few of my trinkets. Here is my..."

Every time you try to get away from Brion or Nelson, they make you look at their stuff. It's semi-funny to steal it before you talk to them, but their conversation just changes to "I can't believe I misplaced that..." or something similar.

Anyway, Brion asks us to look at:

"This represents one of the moons that orbit Britannia." He hands the model to you. Taking it, you quickly realize that it is made up entirely of green cheese. "I carved it myself," he says as you return it to him.
He hands you a solid gold sextant. "This has been passed on to each and every individual who has ever held a position at the observatory here in Moonglow. 'Tis more than 200 years old." He beams as you return it to him.
He shows you a kite. "I made this myself by reading one of the books in my brother's library."
"This," he says, presenting a collection of crystals that seem to be attached in some indeterminable fashion, "is an orrery viewer. It permits one to see mine orrery here from anywhere in Britannia."He seems thoughtful."I know thou cannot stay around here to see the alignment. Wouldst thou like to have this to view mine orrery and better predict the planet's position?"
"Uh, sure, that's fine."
He smiles proudly. "I thought thou wouldst. However, there is one problem. I still need one more crystal to completely finish the viewer. If thou wouldst visit the tavern, thou mightest find one of the merchants or travellers there who sometimes provide me with crystals. If thou canst find another crystal, I will be able to give thee the completed viewer."

The man he's talking about is hanging out at the tavern.

You see a handsome,hardened, muscular man who, surprisingly, bears a friendly smile on his face.
"Please, Avatar. Join me for some company."
"It's funny how 200 years pass from the last time I was active and more people recognize me now than ever did the last couple of times I was around."
"You're pretty infamous, you know."
"I know you want that sly turn of phrase to slip past unnoticed, or at worst to be caught by me and taken as an insult, but I'd say it's actually pretty accurate. Anyway, who are you again, kiddo?"
"I am called Addom, Avatar. I travel the world in search of rare and unique items to sell to museums. I am not a resident of Moonglow."
"So you're kinda like me, huh?"
"Minus the looting, no doubt."
"I have been all over Britannia, Avatar. Nothing about the land frightens me any longer." He grins. "The same is not true of some of the residents... 'Twas a joke, Avatar."
"Believe me, that's not why we're not laughing."
"I have found many odd artifacts. Many of the things thou hast seen in The Music Hall and the Lycaeum have been brought to them by me. In fact, Avatar, I have this unique crystal I found on the mainland near Jhelom that I am hoping will fetch a fair price from Nelson." He pulls out a small clear crystal and shows it to you. The facets gleam in the light.
"Give you 20 gold for that thing."
"Alright, I guess."
"Why did you want to sell this thing to Nelson?"
"He is in charge of the Lycaeum. He loves trinkets and rarities. I am afraid, Avatar, that I know nothing about this fair city. I reside in Yew with my wife, Penni, who is the trainer there. Actually, Avatar, I have met two people here, other than Nelson. I have come to know the bartender and the healer. Phearcy is quite friendly. But he does love to gossip. He has offered me a deal whereby I might earn free meals if I can discover why Nelson's assistant reacts differently to some man, or something like that. I am not going to bother, but pray, do not tell Phearcy that! Elad is very generous. In fact, he is letting me sleep in one of his spare beds while I am in town. His only charge," he laughs, "is the stories I tell him about mine adventures. Not a bad trade if I say so myself," he shrugs.

And now we've got the crystal.

"Thou hast the crystal? Excellent." He takes the crystal that you got from the adventurer and begins attaching it to his orrery viewer. Shortly he is finished. "Use it well, Avatar." He gives the contraption to you.

There's a big stone building out behind the observatory's main area. The drawbridge is up, and requires Telekinesis to flip the switch.

It's worth doing, because the orrery inside is pretty cool and stuff spins around and is just generally neat-looking. It doesn't do much though.

Looking into the crystal ball pesters the Guardian for some reason. Do this over and over just for the hell of it.

Here's the orrery viewer Brion gave us. It moves the camera to the orrery any time it's used. It's not a temporary effect though, which means you can walk around and the camera will slowly pan over back to the Avatar from wherever you are in the world as you walk around. This is rather disorienting and fun, but not useful.

And just past there, the Fellowship branch.

The man greets you with a pleasant smile.
Rankin smiles. "Please tell me how I may be of assistance, Avatar."
"I know exactly what I'm going to ask and what you're going to say, but let's just get the formalities out of the way, eh?"
"Fair enough. Thou mayest call me Rankin, Avatar. I am the new branch leader of The Fellowship here in Moonglow." He grins, obviously embarrassed. "I am sorry. Though the branch opened here several years ago, it is the newest branch on Britannia. I still consider myself a new branch head here."
"What, were you just the biggest fan club in Moonglow or something?"
"Ah, yes, Moonglow. It is a pleasant town. It is possible to find all sorts of people here."
"Like who?"
"I am sorry, but I prefer not to gossip."
"Hey, do you hear a giant red guy talking to you at any point?"
"Hey, hey, leave me out of this one."
"Relax, friend, thou wilt hear when the time is right. There is an inner voice that exists within each and every one of us. This voice is our companion and guide."The deeper one's involvement with The Fellowship, the more often one is able to hear one's inner voice."
"He mostly seems to talk to me when I'm stealing things or sleeping or about to do something stupid."
"...are you quite sure that it's our voice you're hearing?"
"Dude, spoilers!"
"Can we please just ask about Elizabeth and Abraham so we can learn they're not here and get on with the plot?"
"What dear people! They were just here in order to give me my training session. I was just appointed branch leader. This is a new branch, thou knowest. Anyway, Elizabeth and Abraham left to travel all the way to the gargoyle island, Terfin."
"Took you long enough."

Also in the Fellowship is Rankin's shifty-eyed clerk, Balayna. Something's bothering her.

You see a woman with a very serious look about her.
"How may I be of assistance, Avatar?"
"And you are?"
She gives you a suspicious look. "My name is Balayna. I am the clerk for the Moonglow branch of The Fellowship. It is my job to keep records during the meetings, and to administrate the decisions of this branch."
"Something bugging you?"
"I was just... thinking. This seemed to be an... appropriate place to start up a branch. There are many good citizens here in Moonglow." She appears surprised at the statement. "Well, I believe that many of the people are of strong mind and character. They are just the kind of people The Fellowship needs to go out and spread guidance and prosperity throughout Britannia. Many of the people lack the discipline required to reach their highest potential. The Fellowship is designed to enrich the lives of everyone who resides in this fair land."
"So we keep hearing. How long has this branch been here again?"
"Our Branch has been open here in Moonglow for approximately half a decade. Rankin has been here the entire time, but I started at this branch only a few months ago."
"Does she seem a bit uneasy to you?"
"Kind of... hey, Balayna, would you mind telling us a bit about the Fellowship?"
"What, again?"
"The Fellowship is a society of spiritual seekers who strive to reach the highest levels of human potential. We espouse neo-realism through the Triad of Inner Strength. In addition, we manage and organize many festivals and also operate a shelter for the needy. Rankin is the branch head here in Moonglow, as you know. He can answer thy questions. The Triad is basically three principles that, when applied in unison, enable the individual to better reach creativity, satisfaction, and success in life. The three principles are: Strive for Unity, Trust thy Brother -- and sister -- and Worthiness precedes Reward."
"And do tell me about worthiness."
"Errr, well, this basically means that individuals should strive to be worthy of that which they want in life. It is often misquoted as `thou dost receive what thou dost deserve,' but that tends to have negative connotations."
"Something is on your mind. You barely sound like you mean it."
She glances around cautiously. "Thou art travelling through the city, correct? And eventually going to visit another city -- Britain, perhaps?" She shoots another glance, apparently checking for something. Finally, she leans forward, speaking with a whisper. "I am unsure whether Rankin is worthy of his position. I heard him talking to the new member, Tolemac, just before Rankin persuaded him to join. He admitted to having doubts about The Fellowship. He told Tolemac that he thought, perhaps, The Fellowship encouraged its members to be nothing more than sheep, and that those really 'in charge' were charlatans, in it simply for the money. What does thou think about that?" She leans back.
"Well... if thou dost see anyone..."

Balayna's concern seems a bit odd, as does her caution. Perhaps we should ask Rankin about what he said.

He begins to look amused."I would not let it worry thee too much, Avatar. I am afraid Balayna is a bit too ambitious. I would expect she overheard one of my conversion speeches and misunderstood my words. I will have to discuss this with her when I have more time so I may allay her fears." His eyes widen, as if he is remembering something. "I had forgotten, she requested a small vial of liqueur from an itinerant merchant who would be passing through Britain. He brought it here a few days ago and I have not had a chance to give it to her. Wouldst thou be willing to deliver it to her for me, Avatar?"
"She's like three feet over there."
"Uh, okay?"
"Excellent, my friend. I thank thee." He gives you the vial of liquor.

And so...

"This is going to be pretty hilarious."
"What do you mean?"
"What's this?" she asks, taking the vial from you. She opens it up and sniffs. "Very good quality. I wonder why he..." she clutches her throat and gasps. You notice a wispy smoke rise from the top of the vial now spilling out of her hands. Choking, she falls to the ground, and dies.
"Did you know that was going to happen?"
"I kinda had a hunch."

This isn't suspicious or anything, Rankin.

"What!" he appears stunned. "Died? How is that possible?"
"Gee I don't know, she drank a mysterious liquid you gave me to give to her and suddenly dropped dead, how do you figure that worked out?"
"The liqueur? Why, art thou implying that the merchant had cause to kill her?"
"Not exactly."
"That is absurd!" He appears thoughtful. "Or perhaps not. Mayhaps we will look into that, what sayest thou?"
"Yeah, I'll... look into that."
"Excellent. Let me know if thou dost find any information. Meanwhile, I will make arrangements for her funeral." He shakes his head sadly.

You might find this a bit confusing. If indeed Rankin is the one with doubts about the Fellowship, it might seem strange that he would somehow be responsible for killing Balayna. I have a couple possible explanations for this:

1. Rankin does have doubts about the Fellowship, but he also knows the Fellowship has been killing its enemies, and decides it's better Balayna than him (since she'd eventually rat him out).
2. Rankin was just saying that because he knew Balayna would overhear it, and he thinks she believes it and is too suspicious now.

There's a way to get slightly more information on this later, but it's not quite enough to clear everything up.

To the Lyceum! But first, there's a fox hanging around outside. He's not a wild animal, he won't run away, he doesn't get attacked when you enter combat mode, and he's a slightly different color than most foxes. This means he is, in fact, an NPC.

And an asshole.

You see a fox standing on his hind legs, staring directly at you.
"Uh... you're a fox."
"My name is Frank, devout follower of honesty." He makes a slight bow. "And who wouldst thou be?"
"It is good that thou didst tell me. One should always be honest in one's dealings with others. By the by, thy voice crackles too much."
"I," he says, "am on a quest. A quest for honesty." He sniffs the air, and then turns to you. "By the by, thou mightest have more friends if thou didst bathe a little more often."
"Bathe? Excuse me?"
"Yes, as in 'take a bath.' I must inform thee that thou dost truly stink! Speaking of thy friends, I have heard that thy companion, Dupre, is a drunken sot."
"Hey, I don't think --"
"Yes, from what I have been told, that Dupre has no will when confronted by a tankard of, well, anything. As a matter of fact, thou hast fairly poor taste in companions overall."
"Well, I suppose that's kind of true, but-"
"Thy friend, Iolo, charges far too much for his bows. Perhaps thou couldst have a chat with him."
"Too much? What dost thou mean, too --"
"His bows and crossbows just aren't of the quality that is worth the kind of gold he charges." He takes a step back. "Gads! Thy breath could gag an ox. Thou shouldst consider taking better care of thy teeth, or thy fellows will leave thee."
"My teeth?"
"That is the reason for thine offensive mouth odor. I have not seen anything that yellow since the time thy fellow Shamino ran away from a battle in fear."
"Thou must be mad!" Shamino turns to you. "This rogue needs to be taught a lesson."
"And thy friend, Shamino, Avatar, has quite a bellicose temper."
"You think I know what that word means?"
"Yes, bellicose, warlike, angry. If thou dost not know that, I believe thou needest to improve thy vocabulary. Thou art too unschooled. And," he pauses, peering very closely at your face, "I never noticed how large thy nose is. 'Tis amazing thou canst find enough air to breathe."
"Truly quite large, and not in the least bit attractive."
"Well, goodbye."
"Thou hast the manners of a pig. 'Tis not polite to break conversation so abruptly."
"No, I mean goodbye. Arcadion?"
"Manners lesson!"
"No wait!"
"I'm going to beer-baste him, for the irony."

You see your old friend Mariah.
"Yes, Avatar?" Mariah smiles, a trifle too sweetly.
"Yes, thou mayest tell me thy name," she says, glancing around the building. "Are not the many books beautiful?"
She smiles. "I have a very important job, I do. My, are not those shelves lovely? So neat and orderly." She looks back at you."Be careful! The ink wells are full, and the quills so sharp." She giggles.
"Your job is... something to do with the shelves?"
"Are not they the neatest, most orderly, and well-kept shelves thou hast seen? They do an excellent job of maintaining them! The ink wells are always so full and ready for use. They are so good about keeping them filled and clean! Oh, yes, the quills are quite sharp! Always there when one needs to scribe a missive. They do an excellent job of having many ready at a moment's notice!"
"'They' do?"
"Yes, they do!" Her face turns sad. "But I only sell."
"You sell?"
"Yes," she agrees, "I do indeed sell. I even spell. In fact, I even sell spells! But, if thou desirest reagents, thou art out of luck, for I only sell those during one of the seven weekdays. Wouldst thou like to know which day? What a lovely set of books thou must have! I have just the item for thee to match thy shelves -- a potion. If thou wilt buy a spell or reagent from me, I will sell thee a potion for only its normal price!"
"Which day?"
"Why, today. Thou art in luck. Buy a spell."

She's loopier than a Six Flags ride.

You see a scholarly-looking man with a friendly expression.
"Salutations, Avatar."
"I get the feeling I've done this before."
"Thou mayest call me Nelson. I am the Lycaeum head here in Moonglow, but," he leans close to you, "mine assistant, Zelda, does most of the work."
"You're actually proud of that?"
"She is an excellent assistant. The Lycaeum has never performed better. However, she is a little too stern, I believe, and," he leans in again, "I think she is quite beautiful. She has put an extraordinary amount of time and effort into ensuring the activities in this edifice happen smoothly. And," he adds, "she takes it personally when they do not!"
"Beautiful, you said? Because for Britannia that's a rather poor standard."
"Dost thou not agree? I am flushed whenever her fair presence passes by. But!" he holds up his index finger, "I fear she does not share a mutual attraction. And she is far too serious for me to feel comfortable with a proposal."
"Can we change the subject? And talk about, um... the city?"
"Certainly! I love the island and the people. Mostly the people. Hast thou met my twin brother? He heads the Observatory here. And somewhere in the Lycaeum thou canst find Mariah. Sadly, she is not well up here." He touches his head. "Jillian, the sage, also studies here in the Lycaeum. A good person to see about other residents of Moonglow would be the bartender at the Friendly Knave. Phearcy knows almost all of us here on the island. Oh, and thou must not forget the legend of Penumbra. 'Twas two hundred years ago she cast herself into a deep slumber. Now that I think about it, Avatar, thou art the one she predicted would awaken her. Better hasten, Avatar," he chuckles.
"You're the other twin, right?"
"I do have a twin brother, yes. His name is Brion. People often mistake us for each other, but I think we are nothing alike -- he got all the looks -and- the brains!"
"Why do you keep Mariah around, anyway? She's standing in the other corner of this room ranting about shelves. That's got to get old."
"She was once an adept mage, but ever since the wizards began losing their, er, faculties, she followed suit. Sad, really."
"Yes, well, about Penumbra..."
"Interestingly enough, no one has ever discovered how to enter her house. I believe those mysterious signs on the door require one to have specific items to place next to the plaques."
"I guess we should go check that out."
"Of course thou mayest have free reign of the building. But first," he grins, "let me show thee my..."

Here we go again.

"This solid brass bookstand has matching, overhanging candleholder for late-night exploration in literature. I invented it myself."
"This," he says, holding a solid-gold sheet shaped like a maple leaf, "I purchased at an auction for only half of its value."
He shows you a serpent-shaped, oaken quill holder and its matching scroll opener. "This I picked upwhile travelling through -- thou canst guess it -- Serpent's Hold."
He gingerly pulls out a leatherbound tome. From his robe, he removes a handkerchief and meticulously wipes away the dust."This was given to me by Lord British himself. See, 'tis the first edition."The book he carefully places in your palms is very old, and the gold leaf plating of the title has been almost entirely rubbed off. Turning the book right side up, you can read the title: "Stranger in a Strange Land."

Elsewhere in the Lyceum, we can engage ourselves in this love triangle. For some reason.

You see a woman who meets your gaze with an icy stare.
"What dost thou need now?"
"You are definitely not what Nelson said you were, but I guess fat bald guys can't be picky."
"I am Zelda. I am the advisor at the Lycaeum." She rolls her eyes. "The Lycaeum is the building in which thou dost stand. It is a great library designed to house a wealth of knowledge. Though the structure has changed a bit over the past two hundred years, the essence of learning has not."
"And you keep things going around here."
"Yes," she says. "My job is to manage and regulate the events in the Lycaeum. And," she adds, "provide assistance to the people here in Moonglow -- when they need it! I am in charge of maintaining the reading areas and bringing in new books. In addition, I help organize special group sessions for Jillian's tutorials and set up educational entertainment programs."
"Anything interesting I should read?"
"Yes, actually. The recently rediscovered copy of DeMaria and Spector's work,'The Avatar Adventures.' If thou canst avoid creating too much of a disturbance, I recommend it to thee."
"That sounds like a kids' book."
"A little over your level?"
"We discovered the tome in the lower depths of the basement. We have no way to account for the accuracy of the contents, but have noticed many parallels between the events in the work and the events in Britannia's recent history. The book is a copy of the Avatar's diary, written about two hundred years ago during her most recent visit to Britannia. Of course," she smiles sardonically, "it has been annotated by others. It was recently published to give the general public more courage and confidence."
"It's probably a forgery. If Steve really wrote down everything she did 200 years ago, people would know about Ska-"
"Do not finish that sentence."
"So, you think much of Nelson?
"Nelson is very competent, although a little eccentric. I do wish he would refrain from showing off his collection of trinkets to everyone who enters the building. It always makes such a commotion."
"And his brother?"
Her chilly expression melts away. "Brion," she says, smiling, "is very open-minded and idealistic. He knows the heavens quite well." She looks up to emphasize 'heavens.' "I find him very attractive. But, I do not know how to convey mine intentions." She turns away, shyly. "Unless, perchance, thou wilt aid me?" she asks, hopefully. "Wilt thou agree to tell him for me, Avatar?"
"Drama is always fun, I'm in."
"Thank thee, Avatar. Thank thee." She blushes. "For thy kindness, I will give thee this white potion I found once while straightening the basement."

And so we break Nelson's heart.

"Oh. Oh well," he shrugs in an attempt at indifference. "She was not truly important anyway."

And tell his brother what Zelda thinks.

"Oh, I see," he shrugs. "I never really thought about my brother's assistant in such a manner. That is too bad, for my time permits nothing but mine observations. Ah, well, what else can I help thee with?"

And head back to Zelda to disappoint her too.

She looks down for a moment. "I thought as much." As she raises her head, tears are visible in her eyes. "I thank thee for trying."
"What about Nelson?"
"Nelson? I never really thought about him." She shrugs. "Hmm, I suppose he is not a bad second best. I will try," she says, smiling.

And thus we resolve everything by putting it right back where it started.

He smiles broadly. "Truly that was her response? I am pleased to no end! I thank thee, Avatar, for bringing this joyful message."

Penumbra's house is north of the Lyceum. Except Penumbra's house was SOUTHEAST of the Lyceum in Ultima VI. Xiao's house was where Penumbra's house is now, but the layout is similar (kinda) to Penumbra's old one.

This is a riddle... puzzle... thing.

The obvious answer is to get a hammer. There's one in one of the houses in Moonglow.

This changes the sign. Now it wants a lockpick.

And a ring.

And some thread.

"It most certainly didn't!"

This time it's a gold coin.

"That's the most elaborate doormat key trick ever."

Penumbra's house is in remarkably good shape for 200 years. I mean, a place would look this crappy after 20 or so. In 200 it should barely even be here. The potions are still good despite their age, and the orange one can be used to wake Penumbra.

The mage, having been asleep for 200 years, looks just as she did upon your last visit to Britannia.
"Avatar! I cannot believe 'tis thee! Thou didst come and wake me! I knew thee would!" Suddenly, Penumbra grabs her head in pain. "Oh!" she cries. "Mine head! The pain! What is happening? What didst thou do to me?" She closes her eyes and concentrates. "There is a disturbance in the ether! I can feel my magical powers fading! Help me, Avatar! Help me!!"
"Uhhhhh, I have a question."
Penumbra is in so much pain she can barely speak. "Yes, Avatar?"
"Is this really the best time to be asking her simplistic questions?"
"Look, man, I keep this stuff standard, no matter what. JOB?"
Penumbra is in pain. "I cannot think straight whilst the ether is disturbed. I can do nothing until it is flowing smoothly again! The ether controls all the magic in the world. When there is a disturbance in the ether, no mage can cast successful spells. A mage might even lose his mind after a long period of time! Thou must find a way to protect me from the warped ethereal waves!"
"How are we supposed to do that?"
"I need some kind of barrier to protect me from the ethereal waves. There must be a material we could use!" Penumbra clutches her temples. She is obviously in great pain. "Dost thou know of a material that is impenetrable?"
"Iolo's wife?"

"Hahahhaha. Seriously though, what is it?"
"Maybe blackrock?"
"Yes! That is what we need! Please -- canst thou find a few pieces of blackrock to set about my room? I will need four pieces! But hurry! I do not think I can last much longer! Please go!"

"I feel bad about giving up our explosives, but Iolo seems to be in better spirits now that he's not lugging several dozen pounds of the stuff."
"Now I know how Dupre felt."
"Screw you, man, my spine is still a little numb. You have no idea."
"Oh! I feel so much better! The pain is ebbing. Now we may converse much more easily."
"You wouldn't think it would be that easy."
"I feel much better. The damaged ethereal waves are not striking my mind. But now we must destroy what is causing this problem!" Penumbra thinks a moment. "I feel that the damaged ethereal waves are coming from a source very near here. I suspect there is something in a dungeon on these islands that is creating the havoc. Try Dungeon Deceit. I have a strong sense that thy goal is there." She closes her eyes a moment. "In my mind's eye, I see a large object shaped like a tetrahedron. I am beginning to understand what this is."
"What the hell is a tetrahedron?"
"It's a d4."
"Who the hell uses a d4?"
"Yes, that is the shape of the thing I have seen in my mind's eye. It appears to be some type of magic generator which damages the ethereal flow." Penumbra thinks a moment. "This generator is producing dangerous ethereal waves. Thou must find the Ethereal Ring and wear it to break the generator's defense. Now where is that ring...?" Penumbra consults some books and cross references them with a map. "I believe that the Ethereal Ring was last in the possession of King Draxinusom of the Gargoyles. Once thou hast found the ring, thou must bring it back to me. I must perform an enchantment upon it so that it may work for thee."