| PHIL'S GUIDE TO UNFINISHED USECODE|
An enlightening discourse on the enigma of usecode. Beginning
with the heretofore unresolved mysteries of global variables...
THE BOOK OF THE FELLOWSHIP
by Batlin of Britain
Good morning to thee, gentle friend and traveller! No matter
what time of day it might be when thou art reading this --
no matter what the hour of the clock -- I say good morning
to thee because this very moment brings to thee the coming
of the dawn. The dawn, as everyone knows, is the moment when
illumination comes. The dawn marks the end of the long dark
night. It is the moment that marks a new beginning. It is
mine humble hope that these words may be for thee a dawning,
or at least, a sort of awakening...
The biography of Britannia's longtime ruler
...While many may remember that Lord British was once but
one of eight monarchs (when the lands were known as Sosaria),
few are aware that he is not even a native of our own lovely
Britannia. His origin is from another world, one from which
he entered ours by way of a red moongate. (In fact, it is
through this same type of gate that the Avatar of legend purportedly
enters Britannia.) As ruler of one of the eight kingdoms,
he was instrumental in selecting a champion to face Mondain,
Minax, and Exodus.
When the terrible machine, Exodus, was defeated, 'twas Lord
British behind whom all the people of Sosaria rallied. The
unified land become known as Britannia, with Lord British
as the sole monarch. Never let it be said, though, that he
rules with a tyrannical hand. His reign hath always been one
of Truth, Love, and Courage, supported by his utmost belief
in the eight virtues. It was Lord British who had the insight
to call forth a quest for the Avatar (who also happened to
be the champion from the days of Sosaria), and who gave prosperity
and happiness unto the people.
Then came his mysterious disappearance, when the Stranger
who became the Avatar was called by his companions to aid
in the search for the lost monarch. Note how Lord Blackthorn,
affected by the Shadowlords, quickly turned Britannia's fair
lands into a place of terror. But find our noble Lord the
Avatar did, and Britannia was restored to its former, peaceful
Then came the gargoyles, and our honorable sovereign thoughtfully
requested the return of the Avatar...
THE APOTHECARY'S DESK REFERENCE
It is the author's expectation that thou art reading this
to familiarize thyself with the effects of various potions
based on their color. The first part of this work will discuss
such aspects, with the remaining pages covering the materials
and steps required to make such alchemical creations.
Black potion: Drinking this will render the individual invisible
for several minutes.
Blue potion: This mixture will put the imbiber into a deep
Orange potion: This potion will awaken an individual who was
magically put to sleep.
Purple potion: This concoction will provide magical protection
for several minutes of hard fighting.
White potion: This potion will provide a small bit of illumination,
much like a candle, for a few minutes.
Yellow potion: This powerful mixture will give healing aid
to the imbiber's wounds.
WARNING: Green potion: This potion is a dangerous toxin, and
will poison the imbiber, possibly killing the individual.
Red potion: This fabulous drink will cure most poisons, including
those acquired from the slugs in the swamps and that gained
from drinking a GREEN potion.
Bluish Black potion: For thine adventures in the Icy Lands,
that renowned concoction is critical in such climate. It is
for thee to use in plenty for it will prevent thee from freezing
Orange Shimmering potion: Specifically designed for the busy
wizard whose lifestyle requires him or her to cast many a
spell. Once this delectable potion is absorbed it will enable
thee to cast many more spells.
This next section details how one can best recreate these
THE PROVISIONER'S GUIDE TO USEFUL EQUIPMENT
While most suppliers will rave about the effectiveness of
a good sword or specially fitted armour, I personally feel
that proper exploring gear is much more necessary. Consider
this, dear reader. While thou mightest happen to encounter
a wild bear in thy travels, or, even less likely, a troll,
thou art doubtless going to be in need of much more mundane
equipment. Wilt thou possibly be outside city walls when darkness
comes? Then buy a torch. And how wilt thou carry thy provisions?
A backpack will prove necessary. And what about a container
for thy refreshment? Purchase a jug or bucket. As for...
WHAT COLOR IS THY BLADE?
The first step in effective sword-forging is to fill a crucible
with metal. Then, with the bellows, the fire should be made
extremely hot. When the flame no longer continues to grow
in its glow, set the crucible on the fire to melt the metal.
Afterwards, pour the molten metal into the blade mold and
let it cool. Be warned! The crucible is at an extremely high
temperature. Lift the cooled blade from the mold. Again heat
up the fire and set the blade within. Be careful not to let
it lose its shape. Set it in there only long enough for the
blade to become malleable.
When it is ready, finish shaping it on the anvil with the
hammer. When thou hast formed a blade of the desired shape,
use the quenching barrel to cool the metal. It will harden
quickly, so be sure the blade is as sharp as thou dost want
it to be. All that thou hast left to do now is to put the
pommel over the tang. It will require hard work to make a
fine, sturdy sword, but the finished weapon is well worth
JOURNAL OF THE KING OF THE WHITE DRAGON
On the Twelfth Day before the Solstice Festival: Shamino,
traitor, I will destroy thee as thou didst destroy my beloved
daughter, Beatrix. Shamino, cursed be thy name, I befriended
thee and thou didst betray me. I asked my people to help thee
erect thy castle and betrayal is thine only response to them.
On the Eleventh Day before the Solstice Festival: Despair
hath been the daily lot of my poor Beatrix. Now, I myself
have my share of worries. I am surrounded by traitors and
goblins are closing in on the castle. Shamino, doomed be thy
name, I, King of the White Dragon, want to hang, draw and
quarter thee. My poor Beatrix was so joyful when thou didst
request her hand from me. I agreed happily to such a union.
My beloved daughter left me in order to live in thy new castle.
By that time thou hadst already been touched by the obsession
to foil Mondain from his conquest of the world. Thou didst
leave on thy journey to seek the advice of Lord British, from
hence never to return. The long-awaited wedding was never
to be. My lovely child, my Beatrix, remained unwed waiting
for her love to return. She loved thee and had faith in thee,
Shamino, cursed be thine offspring.
On the Tenth Day before the Solstice Festival: Those goblins,
I see those malformed goblins coming for us. They are destroying
our wealth and our lives as Shamino, cursed be his name and
his lineage, destroyed my Beatrix's health and life. She died
forlorn. Thy treacherous heart led Beatrix to a lonely grave.
On the Ninth Day before the Solstice Festival: The Kingdom
is plagued by hordes of goblins that grow more fierce and
daring with each passing season. I am surrounded by traitors
and should not trust anyone. What to do? Beatrix, thine adorable
light no longer shines upon me. How solitary thou must be
in thy cold bed. This year I will hold the grandest Solstice
Festival ever. Thou wilt love it. 'Tis especially dedicated
to thee, my right well beloved.
On the Eighth Day before the Solstice Festival: Those magic-warped
goblins are everywhere and they are persistent. They must
be led by that villainous Shamino. A man who doth not keep
his word is less than a man. How couldst thou trust him, Beatrix.
On the Seventh Day before the Solstice Festival: Shamino
the deceitful and his allies are waiting in the dark passages
of this castle to ambush me. I know it. I saw them in my dream
last night. They will not succeed. They cannot succeed for
I have a plan to save my people from traitors and ravaging
goblins. Beatrix, I will let thee know about this idea of
mine, thou wilt be delighted...
On the Sixth Day before the Solstice Festival: My dearest
beloved one, how thou must long for company in thy misery.
This bacchanal will bring thee all of thy friends and our
people. That villainous Shamino will have the fate he doth
On the Third Day before the Solstice Festival: I am looking
forward to seeing thy Solstice Festival, yes, this season
is thy Festival. I planned it for thee. And, indeed, for all
of us. Traitors and deceivers alike are in for a surprise.
All of my subjects and myself -- we will not leave anything
for the goblins to take.
Two days hence....
On the Eve of the Solstice Festival: All is prepared for my
greatest bacchanal ever.
On the morning of the Solstice Festival: Beatrix, soon we
will be reunited and part never again. This Solstice Festival
will be recorded in the annals of the Kingdom of The White
Dragon. It is to be the greatest feast ever! Let us all rejoice
in one night of revelry! After the midnight revels and before
the end of the night, a new dawn will rise...
I was hired by Batlin the first time we met, in Fawn. A
recently shipwrecked pirate, I had escaped from the Storms
as well as jail. Since then I have been in his service with
no interruption nor reason to complain.
Week 1: Our first meeting was a strange one. I remember
gazing around from the shores of the bay, climbing on top
of a hill and seeing no signs of life. No signs of life for
miles and miles around except in a spot in the middle of the
bay where I perceived a shimmering city: Fawn. On my way downhill
I ran into a group of men in which I recognized an old pirate
friend of mine, Pilot. They were looking for manpower and
I was available. Pilot introduced me to Batlin and I was in.
We marched into Fawn where Batlin had some business to conduct.
Weeks later: How we got to this place, I am not certain,
for I was blindfolded while we were in the doing of it. All
I can say is that my master knows powerful magics, which allow
us to step aside from the barriers of this physical world.
Thus, I find myself in the frozen north, in the abandoned
sanctuary of a long dead people. Here, we have slain a Beast
of Ice, and captured a Daemon's Soul. Soon after the Daemon
was imprisoned, I beheld with anxious eyes a dreadful vortex.
Believe me, I have seen many a storm on various seas and continents,
but never ever such a fury. It is as if Nature herself is
On the third day of the following week: At the first streak
of dawn, we travelled overland across the snowy wastes to
the great mountains which my master calls the Peaks of Skullcrusher.
In the depths beneath the mountains, we sought another of
these Daemons. This proved to be a difficult task. We had
to keep a strict watch to discover him in his hiding place.
Finally, we trapped the second prisoner, whose name is Anarchy.
We searched all over the Skullcrusher mountains for this bane.
On the last day of the week: Then, we travelled by magical
means until we found ourselves in the tangled forest of the
northlands. The last Daemon had eluded us in the Plains of
Ice, but in his new form he was not so swift. Now his trail
hath led us to this ruined castle. I will finish this entry
To the only begetter of these sonnets
To the well-wishing adventurer in setting forth...
Shamino, valiant adventurer, Homo malicious
Adored from mine earliest hour,
Magnanimously, thy presence on all dost shower
Infinite love! By life thou dost devour,
Non-fading and delicious, Our charming love, sweetest power.
My heart is a chest Of bitterness
Since we are apart
A harness of teardrops
I fear lest I should fall from some height
On my shoulder
In mine heart
Shamino Dost thou not Know How to care?
Since the War of Mondain
One memory I keep
When beyond these Realms
Thinking of us I weep
Is there one more
Chance to meet under the elms?
Never this warrior's destiny
allowed His love to gain
Though restless, roving on adventure proud
He traversed oft the land
And oft the main
But love is like grain
It needs a tender hand
To grow, flourish and mature
The Wrath of Mondain
Destroyed our bond
Thy past thou shalt nurture
For greater future
In the worlds beyond
Sunset Over the Main Gate
Going thy way I stare at thee
Breathing in thy scent
I start the ascend
Hastily Blasting thee with a spectral
spell I shimmer Away.
Beneath the yew
Thoughts of thee
Keep me warm and jolly
Raindrops like dew
On a lily's petal
Gently brushing my skin
Cleansing for the soul
What a delight
Never too soon
Watching my reflection
In the river
As doth the Harvest Moon
Night after night
In this season.
Shamino, shadows of thee appear
Before mine eyes all the year
I see the main road clear
Winding down to thy Castle
Where the winds whistle
There, at night I delight
At the magic sight
Of spectral spells like thunder
On thy neck, warrior
Thou shalt not Abandon me.
I grew up in a tiny village on the southern coast. Life
hath been good so far and I know it will be longer than this
- One locket stolen from Frigidazzi, who refused to accept
the passion I would have spent on her.
- The Living Scalp stolen from Filbercio, who sentenced me
- The Spectral Orb stolen from Mortegro. I hate him, for he
uncovered my dangerous research and betrayed me to the Council
- The Flux Analyzer stolen from Gustacio. Gustacio the influential,
Gustacio the dignified, Gustacio the magisterial, I despise
thee! I despise thee for thou representest everything I could
- The Wand of Stone, taken from Torrissio. I blast mine hatred
of Torrissio to the seven winds, for he was my partner in
twisting the rules of the Mages, yet he abandoned me to their
I was born and raised in the city of Moonshade, a foe of
Vasculio. Then I was taken to this place, where I am a prisoner
of He Who Was Dead -- Vasculio. Vasculio survives beyond death!
He doth drink blood out of the living to keep himself alive.
Hence his great thirst for fresh blood. His corpse is animated
by means of spells and the Forbidden Reagent. I am his prisoner,
fettered worse than a wild beast; manacled by mine hands and
feet by day and by night. My blood is so vital to him that
he is afraid I could break away. How could I in this cage.
At times, I feel like survival is a meaningless word. I am
exhausted. He hath been awakening me at all hours of the already
too short night, thereby robbing me of mine all too brief
This week I managed to write more. I feel better than last
month but still weak. All through these interminable weeks
in this cage, I have suffered from chronic weariness. I do
not believe escape is possible. I have seen Death face to
face and she hath seen me. I am more than ever determined
to continue to struggle for survival, for this is the primary
instinct of the animal.
The following week: I am losing track of time. I can track
seven day periods but do not seem to recall any other relevant
information; seasons and days are not part of my realm. Like
life, they escape me. Am I less than an animal? This deranged
mage, frantically seeking the lost secrets of Ophidian magic,
certainly treats me as such. Actually, I do not feel anything
anymore. I may live like an animal, but in my mind I am a
man. I still think and write, therefore I exist. If this journal
survives me and thou art reading it, regardless of the time
elapsed, then I am alive. I am alive because my thoughts are
Today, fifth day of this present week, I am going to tell
thee more about the twisted Vasculio. He boasts that his magical
powers are too great to be defeated by mere mortals. I have
to tell thee that he was executed in Moonshade for practicing
spells too diabolical for Man. His powerful magic allowed
him to continue living as a liche. Also, I shall share this
with thee, so that thou mayest make good use of it: Remember
that no information hath value until thou dost test it. My
words, hereunder, will guide thine understanding. Vasculio
hath been experimenting with eternal life theories. Once,
he stumbled upon a magic formula which, when used with the
blood of an innocent, allowed a dead body to live longer.
Moments before his execution he intoned the spell to keep
his body living. Later he escaped from his coffin and travelled
to Skullcrusher. Why Skullcrusher, thou askest? The answer
is simply because he knew there was a second source for Stoneheart.
Stoneheart is the prime ingredient of Bloodspawn, here in
There is also another important reason. Vasculio knew that
his enemies, the Mages of Moonshade, would never follow him
here. Seventh day of the present week: This undying sorcerer
doth spend his time researching new spells. He is convinced
that great magical secrets lie beyond the sealed entrances.
He detects great power and magic in these areas. Vasculio
hath not been able to locate the Grand Shrine within the great
labyrinth beneath the Skullcrusher Peaks. I could tell thee
that he stores provisions to support his allies, the man-eating
Gwani. But this is not out of charity for them, for he also
lives on with their blood. At this point I must stop writing
for I can hear Vasculio howling in the tunnels. This is a
sign that he is coming for me once more...
As they lower me down to this
hole in the ground
I scream for help, but they
cannot hear a sound.
I scratch on this lid.
My fingers they bleed.
They plant me deep like
an evil seed.
Now my bones decompose.
My flesh doth rot.
But soon I will rise and
torture the lot
Day 1: This is the dawn of a new era for me. I have been
experimenting with eternal life for so long now. At last,
I am seeing some results.
Day 2: Entranced more Gwani in order to increase the number
of my servants
Day 3: Forced the Gwani to give to me the secret of entering
certain passages. Experiments still in progress. A pint or
two should keep me alive, depending on the frequency of transfusion.
Day 8: The lost secret of the Ophidians is within my reach,
I can feel it. Ophidian magic will give to me absolute power.
Day 12: Last week I stumbled upon this magic formula which
further lengthens the life span of a dead body. What a discovery!
I need to use the mixture in an adequate proportion with the
blood of an innocent.
Day 17: The caverns around Skullcrusher are filled with Stoneheart.
More than I ever knew! I need as much Stoneheart as I may
find since this is the prime ingredient of Bloodspawn. Stoneheart
doth possess the red-orange glow of stalagmites. Once pulverized
and mixed with fresh human blood it turns into a powerful
magical reagent. Even though I have tried extremely powerful
spells, Bloodspawn is easy and safe to transport. The mages
who say otherwise are fools.
Day 21: This day I have spent researching many new spells.
Exhausting. The prisoners in the cage may not live long enough
to fulfill my plans. They seem to be weak.
Day 28: I am convinced that great magical secrets lie beyond
the sealed entrances, for I sense great power and magic in
Day 34: Today is a sad day. My servants have failed me! While
transporting Bloodspawn, they suffered simultaneous seizures
and toppled into a chasm -- the Bloodspawn was lost! This
is endangering my schedule. I need more workers. They must
work longer hours. Toil is a necessity; sleep, an addiction
from which they must be weaned.
BEYOND THE SEALED ENTRANCES
After all these years, I found two sealed entrances in the
depths. I believe there is much to be discovered beyond these
entrances, for they must have been sealed for a reason which
doth go beyond mine understanding at this point in time. I
have detected great power and magic in those areas. I presume
that superior magical secrets lie beyond the sealed entrances.
The Magic Gate hath not been easy to use. We had to search
for the answer and it was only after much trial and error
that we were able to determine that the key is a sequence
of five colors. Red directly precedes White: Blue follows
Yellow: Yellow directly follows Red: Yellow and White do not
immediately follow one another.
As heretofore, the access to the doors of the Temple is
blocked by a lock. The combination to this lock caused much
commotion. Herein is mine experience revealed to thee as it
unfolded. Mark my words, for they will save thee much time.
I write the letters in our alphabet, but substitute the Serpent
Runic letters to make thine understanding plain. I cannot
write those cursed snake shapes. The runes must be placed
left to right on the floor before the brass doors; any other
placement will result in endless frustration. I tried W.O.B.
and C., none of the runes were in the right position. I then
tried C.B.W. and O.-- again, none of the runes were in the
correct position. I then tried the O rune in the first position,
which was not where it belonged, and knew I could discern
by Brother Markus
In the middle of a stormy night, a deafening roar of thunder
tore apart the heavens and woke us. It was to be followed
by five rapid and resounding knocks on the main door. I rose
out of bed, donned my sandals and walked to the double doors.
A desperate hand was pounding on the wooden frame. Most likely
some belated traveller had been caught in the storm, I thought.
As I half-opened the door, a swift streak of lightning pierced
dramatically across the clouds, illuminating the darkness.
Through the slashing rain appeared the figure of a bedraggled
man, bedraggled yet with the certain stamp of nobility in
his brow. Yet I did not recognize him. He rushed in, looking
for the hearth. Several of my brethren helped him with dry
clothes and a hot beverage. He said his name was Blackthorn,
and that he had come a long way to seek refuge in our monastery.
He thanked us sincerely and then asked for hospitality,
which we granted him. He said that he was an exile from a
land called Britannia, and that since his departure he had
been roaming the seas in search of a haven. He stayed with
us, at the Monastery, for some time. We taught him from the
writings of Xenka, whence he learned that birth, ranks, titles,
power and gold are meaningless, for this world is but a thoroughfare.
We are all brought into this world equal in rights and we
depart from it carrying nothing with us but our deeds, good
Day 1: Alea jacta est! Departure for the daemons' stronghold,
with all our worthy company. Finally, we are ready to pursue
this campaign. We are going to erase these daemons from the
face of the earth. Dungeon Furnace, thy time hath come, thou
wilt burn! Our troops are marching into the caves. I am more
relaxed after all those days of recruiting men. This is a
strong army, as large as daybreak, whereby thou wilt observe
the valor concealed in our noble hearts. Monitorian knights
have never feared anything or anyone, certainly not daemons!
I am confident in a swift victory for our side.
Day 4: 'Tis hot, with a stench like brimstone in the air.
The mist doth have an unhealthy odor, and our limited supply
of foods hath made us cautious. Wrapped in my bedroll by the
fire, I slept soundly. So did most of our men. The battle
hath been taking its toll on us all. In the morning, I rose
at the sound of the war drums echoing in the distance. They
kept coming. In brief, by one means or the other, our company
Day 7: The next move was to attack before daemons could form
into a solid defense again. Lost two of my right best old
stalwarts in a horrible manner. They walked too close to the
pool and were taken by that horror in the pool. Knight, pity
thy companions for they left for the abysmal depths of the
Day 11: Tense and anxious times have fallen upon thee, Pendar.
Burning as was the day, I broke out in a chill as I witnessed
the company being decimated. What a slaughter! Darkness closed
in upon us. For the last couple of days, I have not slept,
though I am weary and tormented. I confess having scarcely
closed mine eyes on any night this past week. The nights are
sleepless and the days seem to be endless nights.
Week 5: I saw a star in the caverns, large and bright. It
was surely an omen. I rose and walked aimlessly; soon a peaceful
feeling was to overcome me. At that moment, my self-confidence
was higher than the sun in the sky. The lure of combat swept
again through my veins, mine heart was pounding, I was ready
to go into a decisive battle.
THE SLEEPING BULL
Rodolfo of Moonshade
Nakholy of Fawn
Ensorcio of Moonshade
Rishar of Monitor
Batlin of Fawn
Palos, manservant of Batlin
Rodolfo of Moonshade
Rishar of Monitor
THE BOOK OF PROPHECIES
When a stranger sojourns with thee in thy land, thou shalt
not do him or her wrong. The stranger who sojourns with thee
shall be to thee as the native among ye. And thou shalt love
him or her as thyself; for I see the advent of a Hero From
Another World who would unite the Serpents and save the world.
I see the rocks in motion, and trees bursting open -- I see
treasures which have lain hidden for centuries coming forth.
There I see one which is of three. It is black. It is magic.
Clearly do I see a Hero From Another World, but let it be
said that they must not advance as one alone! I pray thee
above all things to have this in remembrance. They must be
accompanied by The Three. The Hero From Another World will
succeed through the use of powerful magic, the aid of specters,
and the implements three of the Hierophant.
My words shed light upon darkness. Follow the unfolding
of my words and thou wilt see that the friends of the Hero
shall be enemies. Visions shall make wiser than enemies, for
thus is it always with . The Hero From Another World must
triumph even in Dreams. The dead shall aid , but enemies among
the living shall abound. A careful choice of ally is necessary
to ensure success. The Hero From Another World will even need
a thief and a braggart as ally. I see the future as through
a veil -- shall be allied with those once enemies, and shall
find good men in bad company. I see the color red, and a woman
Day 8 -- This rotten place ain't for me. It don't seem possible
to revel around here.
Day 9 -- Did some work for Batlin. He thinks too much of hisself.
I wish he'd fall off a cliff.
Day 12 -- Why did I ever leave Britannia?
Day 20 -- Batlin better pay me in gold or I'll be teachin'
him a lesson. Gold is the only way for me to leave this bilgehole
and have some fun in Britannia. Already know what I'll be
buyin'! Buccaneer's Den is my idea of a good place to be!
Day 3 of Week 9: Today, I had another argument with Erstam,
that old crazy mage with a foul temper! I could never stand
him, I never will. Who doth he think he is? Erstam and I are
so different that we simply cannot work together.
Day 4 of Week 9: My precious Jawbone, I am so glad thou art
mine, I use thee often and often again and still have no grounds
to complain. What would I do without thee, tell me? Erstam,
thou art not the only one who can travel through the Void!
Day 7 of Week 9: Thy magic telescope is merely another trick
thou hadst divined when thou didst fear my powers. Useless
piece of equipment for a crazy old mage. I am tired of thee.
I understand why Drogeni never came back... Thou art looking
for immortality and will end alone, Erstam! I, Silverpate,
will prove thee wrong. I will discover the solution relevant
to our matters.
This is a complete sourcebook for a variety of patterns.
Included are patterns for clothing, blankets, quilts, and
sheets. The introduction even includes a section on weaving
one's own cloth.
...take the bale of wool and spin it on the wheel to make
the thread. Once that is done, warp the thread across the
loom and begin weaving. Shortly thou wilt have a nice length
of cloth from which canst make a variety of useful things.
For variation, use different colored threads on the loom to
create exciting patterns.
THE BLACK COMPENDIUM
Written by Mondain,
with annotations by the enchantress Minax
and magical formulae by the hellspawn Exodus.
To extend one's life is a complicated procedure, taking
years to complete. However, there is an additional side effect:
invulnerability. I have broken this work down into chapters
based on each individual ritual. It is very important that
these steps be performed in the order presented.
First, thou must procure five stones of the dust of crushed
rubies. This must be mixed thoroughly with the ooze of a slime,
enough to make the rubies into a thick paste. After thou hast
created the paste, set it in an ivory jar and place the entire
container in a bucket of olive oil for three years.
The next step is to procure 10 newborn babes, none more
than six days old. With a knife cut from the bone of a harpy,
thou must remove the blood from each newborn. To be kept fresh,
the blood must be stored in an onyx flask, though mixing of
each baby's blood is quite permissible.
Now thou shalt seek out...
This large tome describes most of the common plants indigenous
...The Greer plant is especially fascinating, for it spends
most of its life huddled with its leaves wrapped in a tight
ball. However, every so often, the leaves will unfurl, radiating
out from the stem...
...The Reaper is unique in that it is both plant and animal.
Resembling a large tree, the Reaper is capable of self-animation
as well as self-locomotion. Reapers have been known to attack
those who cause harm to their home (i.e., the forests), but
seldom reveal themselves otherwise...
Betwixt the covers of this book can be found details on
the most prevalent animals that inhabit the lands of Britannia.
...Deer are quite prevalent in the forested areas of Britannia.
They are shy creatures, generally shunning the presence of
man, whom they know hunt them. Atop their head sits a pair
...The fox is a small animal, akin to a dog or a wolf. It
is an omnivore, and more than willing to make do with a farmer's
chicken when it tires of other foods...
BIRDS OF BRITANNIA
by Brother Wayne
Bound here is the comprehensive guide to the avian species,
beautifully and colorfully illustrated by many different artists.
...Surprising to many is that the Silver-Winged Pharcelot
is not the most prevalent bird in Britannia, though it is
arguably the most visible. Far more popular is the Black-Tipped
Grackle, but its predilection for dark, cool areas makes it
considerably less visible.
An enlightening discourse on the enigma of programming.
Beginning with the heretofore unresolved mysteries of global
TEMPLE OF BALANCE
Only he who hath achieved balance within this temple may
be free to find greater balance on the path to the Grand Shrine.
He who wishes to find fulfillment must use the fire of chaos
and the ice of order to restore balance. Only a true serpent
of fire and serpent of ice will bring thee to balance.
IMPLEMENTS OF BALANCE
A devout follower will know the true path towards Balance.
Thou shouldst know the arts necessary to achieve Balance.
To those of you who have forgotten your lessons -- take heed:
Fire is the embodiment of the force of Chaos, Ice is the embodiment
of the force of Order. The Ice Diamond and the Fire Ruby are
necessary to achieve balance within the shrine. Disciple of
Balance, know the true way to balance fire is with ice, and
the one way to balance ice is with fire. Using thy tools of
the candles of fire and the solids of ice thou mayest achieve
the way to Balance and to the Shrine.
The Great Hierophant, who feared that the followers of Chaos
would attempt to gain access to the Sacred Library, ordered
the Adepts of the Conjury to construct a secure means of entering
the Library. The Adepts spent many long nights in contemplation,
rejecting one idea after another as being too impractical.
It was the suggestion of a mere apprentice, Kethiss, that
was finally accepted by all of the Adepts. Our Beloved Leader,
the Great Hierophant, was soon informed that there could be
only one way to gain ingress into the Sacred Library. The
Adepts, acting in concert, placed a charm of teleportation
upon our Gate. The Great Hierophant was adamant, however,
that he alone could have access to the Sacred Library. Thus,
the Adepts wove the charm of teleportation so that it would
only trigger when the Wand of the Serpent was used on the
The Great Hierophant, may he live a thousand years, hath
successfully entered the Sacred Library by using the Wand
of the Serpent and stepping upon the Serpent Gate...
THE SHRINE OF BALANCE
Before proceeding to the main shrine, the devout follower
must reacquaint himself or herself with the six shrines of
the Temple. These shrines are dedicated to the forces of:
Discipline, Tolerance, Ethicality, Enthusiasm, Emotion, and
One achieves enlightenment through Balance.
Tolerance becomes the chain that unites the whole.
Ethicality is a beacon to guide our actions.
Enthusiasm is a rose that brings beauty to our rising.
Discipline is our weapon against faltering.
Emotion is a heart that is a reservoir of our feelings.
Logic is calculated truths leading us from ignorance.
Tolerance balanced with Ethicality brings us Harmony.
Enthusiasm balanced with Discipline bestows Dedication upon
Emotion blended with Logic and Logic balanced with Emotion
Only by achieving Harmony, Dedication, and Rationality can
one find the path to the Grand Shrine of Balance. Balance
is the key to the Shrine.
ARTIFACTS OF COMMUNION
Before the War of Imbalance our priests did fashion three
artifacts: the Web of Fate, the Moon's Eye, and a Magic Lens.
Each artifact was made for a particular temple. The Web of
Fate was placed within the Temple of Tolerance. The Moon's
Eye was placed within the Temple of Emotion, and the Magic
Lens was placed within the Temple of Enthusiasm. Our holy
fathers used the power of these artifacts to commune with
the Power of the Void -- to answer questions that the mind
of mortals could never fathom.
The War of Imbalance changed everything! The artifacts no
longer worked properly; the holy father's questions were left
unanswered -- their hoarse voices echoed within the deserted
temples. The only power left within the holy artifacts was
the ability to divine the location of the Banes of Chaos.
Each artifact could spy upon a different Bane.
GUIDELINES OF LIFE
1: Tolerance becomes the chain that unites the solidarity
into the whole.
2: Ethicality is a beacon to guide our actions.
3: Enthusiasm brings beauty to our rising.
4: Discipline is a weapon against faltering.
5: Emotion is a heart beating strong and proud.
6: Logic is a straight guide upon which we can rely...
PENGUINS OF THE NORTH
Observations by Ssashartha
Talking about all living creatures on our beloved Serpent
Isle, we cannot forget to mention the family of the penguins.
Those clumsy-looking beings are called birds even though they
cannot fly. They live in the northern part of this island.
Penguins are very good divers. The short wings of their strong
bodies are used as a rudder. Out of the water they walk upright
just as Men and the tail is an important tool to keep balance.
Depending on the species, they can grow taller than 3 feet.
No matter what the species, all penguins live in a sociable
manner and breed in seemingly peaceful colonies. The female
penguins take much pride in building the nests. Because of
their size, penguin nests can easily contain more than mere
TENETS OF DISCIPLINE
Precepts by Shushuro
1: "One cannot master the world around him without first
2: "A task left unfinished is a task failed."
3. "The means to succeed is brought about by discipline."
4. "Discipline brings about obedience. Obedience brings about
5. "The mind disciplines the body."
TEMPLES OF ORDER
Pilgrims, it is a great journey to visit the three Temples
of Order. Do not let the obstacles sway thee from thy destination,
for though the path is difficult, the rewards are many. Seek
the Fountains, for their Water is the essence of the Force
which resides at that sanctuary. Imbibe the Waters, and drink
of the fruit of thy quest.
The Temple of Ethicality is found near the coast, south
of the Spinebreaker Mountains. It was built in such a way
that those who come here may gain inspiration from the view.
This is the first Temple on the Pilgrimage of Order.
Continue next to the Temple of Discipline. The western branch
of the Spinebreaker Mountains is where the Temple of Discipline
was carved out. Seek the great bay, then follow the eastern
coast until thou dost reach the mountains. Continue east,
and thou shalt be sure to find the entrance.
Lastly, the Temple of Logic lies within the Glacier Mountains,
with the entrance being in the southern tip of the mountain
chain. There are many passageways until one finds the Tests
of Logic which lead to the sanctum.
Above all, do not mistake any Temple of Chaos for one of
the sanctuaries of Order, for in this path lies Madness. Only
Order is fit for study; chaos defiles all it touches.
THE IMPORTANCE OF MEDITATION
Manual by Zazanush
The importance of meditation becomes noticeable when people
of all ages admit that they are living a better, more peaceful
life since they started to seek communion with the Serpent
of Order. To apply the power of meditation to one's life,
young student, obey the rules and follow them as they are
written in this manual. I have gathered some guidelines that
are easy to understand, so that thou mayest begin with these
relaxing exercises without having to investigate any further.
1: Find thyself a place where thou wilt not be disturbed
by anyone or anything.
2: Carefully spread the Mat of Meditation on the floor. Use
only the prepared mats, for they are imbued with special powers
to aid meditation.
3: Kneel and close thine eyes.
4: Concentrate on breathing very slowly and deeply.
5: Begin repeating the mantra "Issit."
6: Do not speak.
7: Do not let anything interrupt thee.
8: Continue with the mantras until thou dost feel total peace
These lessons will lead thee to a much higher level of meditation.
They will prepare thee for the climax of the Test of Discipline.
HISTORY OF SERPENT ISLE
During the First Age, the world was divided into four continents
-- the LANDS OF LORD BRITISH, the LANDS OF THE FEUDAL LORDS,
the LANDS OF DARK UNKNOWN, and the LANDS OF DANGER AND DESPAIR.
After the evil wizard Mondain was defeated, only the Lands
of Danger and Despair remained -- all other continents were
destroyed. The Lands of Danger and Despair became what we
now call Serpent Isle, in honor of the Great Earth Serpent
who is our guide. It was he who called to us from the Void,
and in answer to our pleas, he taught us the ways of the Serpent
-- the Way of Balance.
The population on Serpent Isle grew. The citizens helped
each other and relied on each other. There was no crime and
people were holding to their traditions. Parents taught their
children about the Virtues of Order and Chaos. These traditions
were passed on from generation to generation.
Their devotions were presided over by the Great Hierophant.
He was the only one allowed to open the Wall of Lights and
enter the Void -- a magical place that connects dimensions
in space and mayhap even time! Because great danger is involved
in entering the Void, only the Great Hierophant is entitled
to operate the Wall of Lights. Much knowledge is required
for this procedure and the Great Hierophant must be in possession
of the Artifacts of the Serpent.
THE TEST OF PURITY
Throughout our lives we must measure ourselves in tests
of one form or another. This treatise is meant to be read
by those who will be given the test of purity. Purity is important
for a free soul and demands discipline, logic and ethicality
from the obedient human being. Obedience demands a person
who is capable of putting others first and himself last. Putting
others first demands discipline; the ability to finish a task
without being distracted. Putting others first demands logic
that will block the emotion that may ask thee to do otherwise.
Putting others first demands ethicality that makes one believe
in abiding the rules of conduct.
Discipline, Logic and Ethicality in their purest form and
always obeyed will give one a free soul. A soul that is not
enslaved by materialism, egoism and other evil characteristics.
They will serve thee to the purpose of a dedicated life, a
life in harmony with the ability to understand the meaning
of life and the world around thee. The person that truly lives
his life by these rules will be rewarded....
THE POWER OF MAGIC
Many of us have learned with difficulty what it means when
an item important to us disappears. In most cases those things
disappeared forcibly -- they disappeared by theft! It became
necessary to protect brave citizens and their property. People
invented their own types of 'protection-devices'! Some of
those were unfortunately dangerous and harmed the person they
were supposed to protect. Some of them were useful and very
effective. Here are some advanced techniques to protect thyself
and thy property.
To create a device that will protect thine home against
fire, certain items are required. The owner will need 1 keg
of moondust and 1 keg of roasted ice ants. The mixture of
both must be spread around the house in a circle. Unfortunately
this procedure hath not been proven to be absolutely effective
To protect thy farm animals and pets against gruesome predators,
a feed mixture out of the following ingredients is very helpful:
1 bucket of red corn, 1 bucket of fish spawn, 1 bucket of
ground gargoyle horn and 1 bucket of water from the silver
fountain. Feed this to the animals about once a week before
The most effective way to protect doors against intruders
hath been proven to be a combination puzzle for the lock.
The darkest day of all arrives when one of our Great Hierophants
lies down to close his eyes forever. The country's grief is
so apparent that it seems that it may be touched. Every follower,
down to the littlest child, can feel the void that unfolds
with the loss of the Great Hierophant. The only way acceptable
to pay our last respects is a ceremony that indicates without
any doubt how important this being was to our society and
how much they are missed by us.
The body must be laid in state for three full days. After
the blessings, the body will be dressed in holy clothes and
decorated with holy flowers, so that the ordinary folks may
greet the Great Hierophant for the last time, in a quiet manner.
Loud wailing and gnashing is not tolerated. The pain must
be held back until the outside of the shrine is reached. People
may bring small tokens and leave them with the Hierophant
to show their gratitude. A state of mourning for the period
of seven days is ordered for the whole country. Every temple
and every shrine will be open day and night, so people may
gather at all times and share their grief.
One last word to those people who never followed the Great
Hierophant with all their heart: Rebellion, interruptions
of the ceremony and all other possible disturbances will be
prosecuted and punished. No crime will go unseen. Keep in
mind: 'The Serpent Watches Over All!'
CIVIL WAR OR THE EVIL FORCES OF CHAOS
Every morning when I rise it becomes clearer and clearer
to me and to many other people. The Forces of Chaos cannot
be the right way of belief. What they are doing is wrong and
evil. It will bring our country to a downfall. Their actions
are destroying the faith of the citizens in leaders and leadership.
Something must be done. There must be a way to end this Civil
War. Thousands and thousands of brave followers have been
victimized and sacrificed by the powers of Chaos. And thousands
more are to follow if this war doth not come to an end soon.
Someone must be there to help our people and protect them
from the unbridled Tolerance and Anarchy of THOSE people,
that were the root cause of this war. There must be a way,
there must be....
DIARY OF DIABOLICAL TRAPS
I, Seliashor, am accompanying a score of soldiers and scholars
ordered to retrieve the Golden Orb. I was chosen for my knowledge
of traps; a specialty particularly suited for a journey into
unknown lands controlled by a mind such as the Fiend's.
First Level--The first trap! A soldier, wandering into an
alcove, found himself separated from his command by poison
fields! I had the good fortune to be looking his way when
he triggered the trap; it is obviously of magical nature.
If this is all we will face, the ring will surely be ours.
Second Level--The Fiend has raised the stakes! We discovered
a large cavern, in which were numerous statues of harpies
and decorative suits of armor. We had immediately deduced
that these were traps and would smite us if we stepped to
near, but the real trap was more cleverly hidden! Caltrops,
painted to match the color of the floor, drew a great deal
of blood from the soldiers as they gingerly avoided the obvious
statue traps. Clever.
Second Level--We have discovered the next trap. A small
number of chests, clustered together, proved to be explosive
if tampered with. Amateurish--I spotted the trap before any
of the foolish soldiers could tamper with it.
Third Level--Three soldiers entered a completely barren
cavern and triggered a truly fiendish trap. When they reached
the center of the room, we heard the sound of a bell. Nervous
seconds passed. Just when we relaxed, a spell of terrifyingly
destructive nature went off. The soldiers were consumed in
flames which appeared from empty air, disappeared, and reappeared
in other locations. Had they fled from the room, they would
have lived. There was a body in there, and my mind's eye can
still see the light cast from our torches glinting of a golden
object in its hands. If it was the orb, it is lost, for not
one of our number dares to face the flames. I think it was
naught but a gold statue or somesuch; more accurately, I hope
Third Level--we sent another soldier to his death. He was
sent into the narrow mouth of a cavern. I knew he would not
return. When he entered the cavern, an energy field appeared
in the narrow opening! Neither I nor our wizard had Dispel
Field in our spellbooks; he was left to die. He was one of
the last soldiers alive; our prospects for survival are grim.
DENIZENS OF THE CAVES
During our inhabitance of this remote outpost we have been
assaulted by creatures of such uniqueness and variety that
I have taken it upon myself to create a bestiary.
Arachnian: This terrifying creature has the full body, head
and legs of the giant spider common to our island, with the
torso, head and arms of a man growing from just behind its
spider-head. Speculation abounds as to the origin of these
horrible hybrids; some claim the mad servants of Chaos created
it in one of their endless foolish experiments, others say
it was the work of a long-dead lunatic mage. Regardless of
how they came to be, the Arachnian is perhaps the deadliest
of all foes we face here at Serpent's Fang.
Liche: This is not so much a creature as it is a being,
but I consider it worthy of note here. All of the folk I have
spoken to in the keep are rather retiscent about the liche,
but I have compiled the following information: The liche was
here before the keep was established. It is undead; once alive,
it entered a state of "unliving" which heightened its power
but nullified what humanity it may have had when it was alive.
It can command undead and hurl the most devastating of spells.
Naga: A fearsome creature whose lower half is that of a
giant snake and upper half is that of a human woman, the Naga
is capable of delivering devastating vollies of arrows at
those who dare intrude upon its lair. The Naga's origin, like
that of the Arachnian (see above) is questionable. It is best,
when a Naga is spotted, to close for battle immediately, lest
their arrows bring thee down before thou hast a chance to
flee. Additionally, they have been known to use snakes as
a front line while the Naga pick intruders off with arrows.
Shasrajah: These menacing, scaled freaks have intimidating
forms of attack; with their long, snake-like necks they thrust
their heads toward their enemy, latching on with their rending
teeth, then with their strong neck muscles ripping flesh off.
Though they seldom land hits, they are deceptively quick and
resilient to blows. However, they are enormously stupid, unable
to even open doors. They often attack in groups, making them
more dangerous, but they are easily led into traps. Thus have
we been able to repel their regular attacks.
I have considerable information on the origin of these beasts;
basically, they were an attempt by the forces of Chaos to
fuse viper and man. The Lords of Discipline (those fortunate
soldiers whose minds were transferred into the bodies of automatons)
had brought the advantage to Order in the war, and these Shasrajah
were their attempt to tip the scales in their favor. Fortunately,
the soldiers sacrificed to this wasteful end went insane in
their new bodies. They escaped from the lab and began spreading
their foul race all over the subterranean realms of our isle...
THE LOST ORBS
Compiled by Isstherios
I have compiled this work so that, when we have the manpower
to seek out the four lost orbs, all of the information we
have will be available to the seeker.
The first orb, golden in hue, was stored within the keep
in a secret location until stolen by a soldier of Chaos. He
imbibed a potion of invisibility and followed behind the commander,
who had gone to retrieve the orb. When he found the room,
he attacked the unwary commander and stole the orb. However,
his invisibility wore off as he was making good his escape
and he was seen by a troop of guards. The guards chased the
thief until he was cornered southeast of the keep; his only
escape from the guards would have been to plunge into the
Fiend's Domain. This he did, and was never seen again. We
presume it has come into the Fiend's possession and expect
he will try to use it to his advantage.
The purple orb, reputedly housed in the Commander's bedchambers,
was also purloined by a Chaosite, though this one was no soldier.
Those few who saw it will never forget it; they know not whether
the thing was man, beast, or both. The thing was bipedal and
vaguely humanoid, but it had the fur, large ears, feline face,
and claws of a cat. It was being held prisoner in the keep,
but an undisciplined soldier on duty relaxed on his watch
and the cat-man escaped. I know not how it found its way into
the Commander's bedchambers; I assume that its escape was
not well-planned and he happened upon it by chance. However
it did find the orb, the cat-man stole it and ran into the
Maze. No one has seen the creature or the orb since.
The red orb was not stolen, but is out of our hands all
the same. Prior to the closure of the addition to the outpost,
to the southwest of the keep, SubCommander Gareth was charged
with the task of transporting the orb to this area; we can
assume he accomplished his mission, but Gareth never did return.
Shortly thereafter the area was surrendered to the creatures
that currently reign there. It is my presumption that the
orb still rests within this catacomb.
The blue orb is certainly the strangest tale, but its possessor
is a known entity; it rests in the decayed hands of the lich
Aram-Dol. How that malevolent entity came to possess the blue
orb is where the strange tale doth lie. Approximately the
same time the red orb was carried to presumed safety, the
blue orb was to be carried to a location only SubCommander
Gareth knew. The six automatons sent on this mission were
ambushed not far from the outpost; lookouts witnessed the
battle but could not send aid in time. The attackers were
assumed to be spies of Chaos, but their identities will forever
be unknown. They outnumbered the automatons by fully a score;
the battle was quick. They fled away with great haste.
Later a merchant traveling to the keep from Shasavrah reported
that he had seen the thieves in a small town west of the keep,
but the orb was stolen from them, along with much of their
supplies, in the night. The orb appeared again in the hands
of authorities in Thiriastith, who siezed it from a suspected
stolen goods fence. Not knowing its import, the authorities
auctioned it as a bauble to a wizard who knew what the orb
was. This wizard, who was known only as the Asp, aspired to
steal the silver seed. He came to Serpent's Fang as an adventure
seeker and was told that the other orbs were stolen or lost.
He discerned their whereabouts from this information, but
that which he was told was apparently not true, for he set
out immediately for Aram-Dol's lair.
Foolishly, he brought the one orb he possessed with him
into those foul tunnels of Aram-Dol's lair. The dead that
walk those caverns and tunnels soon forced the Asp to join
them in their ever-living death. This new soldier of Aram-Dol
brought the orb to the lich, thus bringing a momentary end
to its lengthy sojourn.
ON ACCESSING THE SERPENT GATE
Though it be true that most of the Serpent Gates are centerpieces
of the destinations they serve, in our fair city this is not
so. To provide a measure of security, we have made our Gate
inaccessible to all those who are not given permission by
the Hierophant himself, for it is he who holds the keys. He
doth keep on his person the Key of Fire and entrusts to an
advisor (whose identity is kept secret to those outside the
clergy) the Key of Ice. When these two keys are placed on
the altar in the Great Temple, these two keys merge to form
the blackrock key.
It is with this key that the Hierophant opens the door to
the Serpent Gate: a simple brass door on the temple's balcony.
From here the traveller is teleported to a grand room, wherein
he walks on graceful bridges to the Serpent Gate. I myself
was once chosen to carry the Key of Ice, and I did keep it
on my person even when bathing in the bath house. I can assure
thee that the Hierophant kept it close to his breast, even
during his leisurely strolls through the park...
REPORT ON THE SHASRAJAH
O Great Hierophant, sorrow fills mine heart to tell thee
the regretful news that our great hope, the Shasrajah, cannot
be counted on to attach the venomous fangs of victory about
the necks of our enemies. Our great experiment hath failed.
As thou hast already been told, we had found a means by
which the minds of our finest warriors and the bodies of snakes
could be fused with one another. The resulting warrior would
wreak terrible havoc on the forces of Order, bringing them
their well-deserved destruction. In the earliest stages of
the experiment all was well; we succeeded in joining Adder
with Man in five of seven volunteers. The resulting form was
vaguely humanoid, with resilient green skin, tough as the
scales of a serpent.
We found that the soldiers' minds were very much unchanged,
and coupled with the quickness and sensitivity to smell of
the adder, the Shasrajah were formidable in battle. Their
long necks had tremendous reach, and they preferred to attack
solely with their strong jaws. We were encouraged by this
success, and accepted eighty-three more warriors to undergo
the metamorphosis. All was well, as seventy-one survived.
We believed we had found a counter to the automaton warriors
the forces of Order had reputedly developed.
Much to our chagrin, however, our experiment went awry shortly
thereafter. As we had them do battle to assess their powers,
we noticed a disturbing trait -- the warrior would become
more bloodthirsty and uncontrollable with each triumph! Soon
they began to rebel against our commands. We had no choice
but to exterminate them and begin anew, but the five hundred
soldiers we sent against our own creations -- our monsters
-- were unable to best them. We surrendered the area to them,
enclosing them with stout doors in the corridors leading out.
I can only assume that they have died. O Great Hierophant,
I would recommend never performing these experiments again;
they are more potentially dangerous than they are potentially
SERVANTS OF ORDER
Over the years, we who follow Order have devised a number
of ingenious servants to simplify our lives. The earliest
attempt is known as the "Animated Suit of Armor". Though automatons
have made these nothing more than curiosities, some functional
units are still in use today (e.g. the Fiend's Domain, but
I implore you not to go exploring just to see one) The animated
suits of armor have picked up many knicknames, such as "Suits,"
"Brass-brains," "Dummies," etc. They are severely limited
in capability, able to understand but a few words, and even
then are more than likely to forget orders more than three
words in length. They were used primarily as guards, for they
could take more damage than a human guard and were replaced
easier if slain than a man would be.
The next achievement, representing a significant leap in
servant design, was the "Brass Automaton." These are still
used (particularly by frontier outposts such as Serpent's
Fang) because they are far more intelligent than animated
suits of armor and less costly to create than iron automatons
(see next page). Their main drawback is that, like the animated
suits of armor, they cannot be re-used once they are slain.
Most commonly used are the "Iron Automatons." Since they
are considered the standard servant in our time, they are
referred to simply as automatons. Iron automatons are slightly
stronger, quicker, and more resilient than brass automatons
as well as slightly more intelligent. The greatest advantage,
however, is that if an iron automaton is slain, it can be
reactivated. The spell used, Create Automaton, is found in
nearly every wizard's spellbook. These advantages do not come
free, however; they are more costly to initially create and
drain more mana and reagents than the lesser servants.
The greatest of all the automatons are not servants at all.
The Lords of Discipline are automatons with the minds of the
greatest warriors transferred into their bodies. They are
unsurpassed in strength, speed, intellect, and resilience,
and have thus far proven to be the determining factor in the
war. It is to this culmination of our knowledge that we, the
followers of the Serpent of Order, shall emerge triumphant
in our struggle with the misled followers of Chaos.
STRENGTH THROUGH ETHICS
Dear reader, I intend this essay to be a guide for thee.
For thou art what thou dost do. Thou dost do what thou dost
judge best for thyself. But, in this matter, is thy judgement
as clear as the sky on a summer day? That is the question.
If thou canst not answer without a reasonable doubt, thou
needest to be enlightened. The purpose of this essay is to
increase thy strength through enlightenment. Ethics will enlighten
Strength is to the adventurer what milk is to the newborn.
Without it there is no growth, only dwindling and loss of
Life. The path to fulfillment is a long climb towards the
heights of the highest and greatest mountain of all. Herein,
I will show thee that there are no shortcuts, and the rewards
awaiting thee are abundant. Be frugal and be prodigal. In
order to receive, thou hast need to give, give, and give again.
Allow me to clarify this. Do not misunderstand my words. Do
not expect to receive something in exchange for thy gift.
Thy gift must come from thine heart. If thou dost expect the
recipient to thank thee, thou art on the wrong path. Thou
shalt thank the recipient.
Meditate upon those words of wisdom and thy strength will
grow with thee. Show respect for all life forms. Unless they
do attack thee, spare them. Be blameless and upright. Being
sincere and fair in all of thy transactions will provide thee
with more power than thou ever hadst. Thou wert strong, thou
wilt be stronger. Thy strength will be exalted in truth. Be
great amongst the multitude of thy brethren. Relieve commoners
and seek their welfare. Be humble. Talk no more so very proudly,
let not arrogance flow from thy mouth like wisdom from the
fountains of Spinebreaker. Thou shalt not use thy tongue to
Remember to practice whatever thou dost advocate. Quality
should be thy rule. Quality of craftsmanship if thou art a
craftsman, quality of the time spent with thy brethren, quality
of the words thou speakest, quality in thine actions. Quality
secures thine ascent above the multitude. Be patient in all
circumstances. That will make thee wealthy, for each minute
is a priceless gem. Remember that water and ice are two facets
of the same element. Be that element. Like water avoid obstacles
as large as mountains. Like ice provide a solid path between
two banks. Rush like water to extinguish a fire. Avoid fire
as unto ice.
Strength feeds on Ethics and Ethics on strength. When trouble
and anguish come upon thee, Ethics will give thee the strength
to overcome. By this thou shalt overcome.
THE STRUCTURE OF ORDER
A collection of the Principles of Order
compiled by Shaashaanna
The Philosophy of Order is based upon the Three Forces of
Order. The Philosophy of Order is a set of principles meant
to lead thee on the path toward strength through enlightenment.
The Three Forces are as follows:
Most righteous reader, let us examine the structure of Order
as it appears through the Forces of Order and the underlying
principles of the philosophy of Order.
Ethicality: What is Ethicality? Ethicality is the belief
in abiding by rules of conduct. Those rules must be in thy
mouth, in thy mind and in thine heart at all times. Doing
so thou wilt understand thou art those rules. The rules are
the Forces. The rules are not a part of thee, they are thee
and thou art the rules. Once those rules, or Forces, are one
with thee, then, and only then, canst thou abide regardless
of the circumstances. Those rules of conduct are not too difficult
for thee; neither are they distant so that thou art not able
to achieve them. Those rules of conduct are within thy reach.
Moreover, they are necessary if thou dost not wish to be torn
and slain by beasts. Beware, dear reader, for the beasts of
Chaos are watching each of thy steps. Thou shalt perform the
words of the Philosophy of Order that are written herein if
thou art to live as a man.
Discipline: What is Discipline? Discipline is the ability
to finish what one hath begun, and to not be distracted. Persevere,
dearest reader, persevere! Listen carefully to these words
and let those principles be with thee. Listen to silence and
it will speak to thee. Discipline is patiently rebuilding
thine house washed away by a solstice flood. In other words,
Discipline is not surrendering thy quest even though some
of thy precious belongings have been eroded or destroyed.
Logic: What is Logic? Some will tell thee that Logic is
'a little bird chirping in a meadow' or that it is 'a wreath
of flowers which smell bad'. Do not lend thine ears to their
confusing messages. We say, dearest reader, that Logic deals
with two states in the Land of Thought: true and false. Thou
shalt realize that: Logic is mightier than magic. Logic turns
darkness into bright daylight. Logic will illuminate the tunnel
of ignorance for thee. It will bring thee confidence and knowledge.
Logic is the ability to think clearly and to reason to a conclusion,
without emotional bias. Logic is the power from within which
will infallibly guide thee throughout various realms across
time and waters.
With the Three forces of Order, wisdom and might are on
thy side, dear reader. Once thou dost have the Forces of Order
in thy life thou shouldst have no fear. Once thou dost have
the Forces of Order in thy life thou shouldst have no doubt.
Once thou dost have the Forces of Order in thy life thou shouldst
have no emotion. Moreover, neither bias nor conceit affect
Will it be well with thee when thou wilt be put to trial
or wilt thou let Chaos overcome thee? Chaos is wrong and hath
no place within our philosophy. Do not attempt any sort of
combination for thou shalt count Balance as thine enemy. Respect
those words for they are words of wisdom. Honor the Great
Serpent, for he taught us this system for the benefit of all.
HOLY BOOKS OF THE OPHIDIANS
Our Sacred Books will reveal to thee what thou must know
to live the life of a true Ophidian. Respect The Books for
They were written with the pain, the blood and the hopes of
thine ancestors. Read our Books to know thyself. Thou shalt
be clean when touching The Books. Thou shalt be pure when
reading The Books. Thou shalt read The Books aloud. Thou shalt
not say with thy tongue that which thou wouldst not make good
with thine actions. Now, thou mayest proceed.
Herein lies the tale of the Ophidians. The Ophidians are
the inhabitants of this continent. In the First Age, the world
was divided into four continents. There was no magic in the
land, and two Kings ruled in peace. This was before the Enlightenment
came to us. Then came a great war, and the Four Lands were
sundered from one another. Then, we were alone. The Destruction
was great. One Kingdom fell when its liege died while abroad.
Madness took the King of the White Dragon. Then the Great
Earth Serpent spoke to us! Our people built beautiful cities
in safe places under the ground. Six temples were built, and
three special Shrines. The Serpents lived among us. This was
This was the time after the defeat of Mondain, when our
spiritual leader The Great Hierophant of The Ophidians explained
the changes in the Universe through our ethical philosophy
of Balance, and its twin properties of Order and Chaos. The
Serpent spoke to us through him. The Great Hierophant was
the only one who could open the Wall of Lights. The Wall of
Lights is the entrance into the Void. He entered the Void
to speak with the Serpents.
Our temples and shrines were organized in the following
The Three Grand Shrines
The Chaos Temples
The Order Temples
The total number being nine.
The Three Grand Shrines were divided into Balance, Chaos
and Order. The Chaos Temples were divided into the Temple
of Emotion, the Temple of Enthusiasm, the Temple of Tolerance.
The Order Temples were divided into the Temple of Ethicality,
the Temple of Discipline, the Temple of Logic. The six temples
had sub-leaders: the Master of Ethicality, the Master of Discipline,
the Master of Logic, the Master of Emotion, the Master of
Enthusiasm, and the Master of Tolerance.
During ceremonies, the Great Hierophant was assisted by
the Order Hierophant and the Chaos Hierophant. Rich jewelry
and shining armour were worn at that time. Throughout the
years we had different successors in charge of those functions.
The deceased Great Hierophants were buried on the Isle of
the Crypts. Then came the Disaster. The Great Earth Serpent
was taken from the Void, no longer to communicate with us!
We became obsessed with the struggle between Order and Chaos.
No more Balance!
The Great Hierophant was murdered and his sacred artifacts
were plundered by zealots of Chaos. Rivalry corrupted the
hearts and minds of our people. The reigns of belligerent
factions began. War broke out. Armies marched, cities were
laid waste, and lava flowed from the deep. The Chaos people
were defeated. This is when the Chaos Serpent was brought
from the Void and split into three Forces. Lest they should
wander the world, they were imprisoned at the three Temples
The scourges of war, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions
with their lava flows and destruction reduced the isle to
a desolate land. Thereupon, the Order people left the land
of their Ancestors known as Serpent Isle in search of a better
place. This is a foolish quest. I alone, a servant of Balance,
am left. I soon will die. All is Death, and the land forsaken.
MY LIFE AND MY BELIEFS
I do not have much time left. I hope it will be enough time
to write everything down, before THEY come for me. And THEY
will come... I came here to this Temple full of love and inspiration.
All I wanted was to read the writings of artistic truth. The
wise men would talk to me and I wanted to listen to them.
But then it happened... I did everything right, I followed
the rules, but I still got confused. After fasting for two
days in the meditation room and staring at the red and black
floor, I was still waiting for a sign. A sign which would
show me the right path to follow. And finally, I could rejoice.
I found my calling and I was taken to the Pool of Dedication.
But then the soldiers came and destroyed everything. They
killed the Great Hierophant of Chaos in the garden. Somehow
the people saved the Sceptre of Enlightenment. They were able
to hide it beneath the lectern... I hope for the safety of
my brother Sethys, for he doth have the key to the Altar of
Tolerance. The Great Hierophant had entrusted him with the
key, before the soldiers arrived... I cannot hope for mine
own safety, for I am sitting here now, awaiting my death.
The Order fanatics will come soon and with them my death is
AND LIGHT THERE WILL BE
by Sasoshi, the Mage
The Ophidians have been living too long in the darkness.
I have been experimenting with different compounds and different
ingredients to find a way to create light, light that lasts
much longer than the artificial light that we have. It hath
taken me years and years of my life. There have been many
accidents with all the devices and the lighting of the Magic
Candles. The candles will announce this celebration throughout
the sky. He who follows the Ways of Balance will shine. He
who shines will pass the Trials of Fire and Ice. He who passes
the Trials will enter the Antechamber of the Grand Shrine.
THE DOCTRINE OF CHAOS
I believe in the Forces and Powers of Chaos. I believe in
the ways of Tolerance, Enthusiasm and Emotion. I believe that
those ways will show me how to better myself and therefore
how to better my life. I believe that believing in Tolerance
will teach me the acceptance of all things. I believe that
believing in Enthusiasm will teach me the source of the energy
which will allow me to accomplish great tasks. I believe that
believing in Emotion will give me the ability to perceive
feelings which come from the heart and not the mind.
The Forces of Order must be stopped. We cannot go on like
this much longer. We hope that our beliefs in the Forces of
Chaos will help us to survive. If we are able to survive,
then our devotion to Enthusiasm will be rewarded in the world
beyond our lives. We can hear the Void calling our names.
We know we need to follow, but we are not ready yet. We must
stop Order first. That must be the purpose of our being here.
If we are successful then we can leave this world without
feeling guilty. If we stop Order then our lives have not been
wasted here. We need to accomplish our task to be able to
prove our worthiness. Only in that do we see a way to truly
show our gratitude.
THE SERPENT LAMP POSTS
These majestic sculptures, each a great snake poised triumphantly
with its mock prey, a shining magical globe, in its mouth,
are signatures of our cities. We owe these magnificent light-bearing
monuments to a spellcaster who went by the name Eshalveras.
It was he who first poised a light globe on a statue of a
serpent, making these statues holy reminders of those we owe
our being to, but also functional parts of our cities. I was
granted, for purposes of recording for posterity the events
of our times, the opportunity to converse with this brilliant
mage so as to provide insights into his remarkable creation.
Eshalveras revealed to me that it was naught but three reagents
combined to form the luminous mineral which acts as long-lasting
fuel for the lamps. All of these, Agnium, Serpentinium, and
Zerine, can be found in many wizards' labs, and certainly
in Eshalveras' lab within the Conjury. The true magic lies
in the pedestal, nondescript in appearance but powerful in
magic. The reagents, when placed on the pedestal, fuse to
form the light mineral, which can then be used in the lamp
posts. Eshalveras is truly a remarkable man; he was able to
relate to me many exciting tales of dweomercraft in our day...
THE GREAT HIEROPHANTS
The first Hierophant ever to commission a pair of our Temples
was Sheshevra. He was selected because of his outstanding
qualities of leadership and his overwhelming sense of Harmony.
He commissioned the Temples of Tolerance and Ethicality. The
Ophidians needed a spiritual leader like him to teach them
the doctrines of Balance. He was responsible for the Temples
and their ways of belief. He was given the authority to perform
all important ceremonies of the Serpent People, known as the
THE GREAT HIEROPHANTS
The last Hierophant to commission a pair of our Temples
was Sessessej. He was selected because of his outstanding
qualities of leadership and his overwhelming sense of Rationality.
He commissioned the Temples of Emotion and Logic. The Ophidians
needed a spiritual leader like him to teach them the doctrines
of Balance. He was responsible for the Temples and their ways
of belief. He was given the authority to perform all important
ceremonies of the Serpent People, known as the Ophidians.
With this book I want to express my pride. I am one of the
few that are allowed to serve our Great Hierophant and I am
proud to serve him. He is one of the few people left in these
days who know what life is about. His wisdom and his leadership
have shown me the purpose of life. To serve him is quite an
experience and I am very thankful to be the one who is blessed
with the duty. He hath told me about many events in his life
and I want to share these with thee.
At one point in his life he visited the Isle of Balance,
which is also known as Sunrise Isle. He hath climbed the mountain
there to the top. And that is where the most amazing of his
stories took place. On top of that mountain he heard the voice
of the Great Earth Serpent. The Great Earth Serpent told him
to commission the building of the Serpent Gates and the three
Grand Shrines... Believe me reader, when I listened to this,
I shuddered with awe... I still cannot believe that I am the
one chosen to be his servant. What a blessing it is...
Handbook for the Commissioned Soldier
This handbook will help the Commissioned Soldier to realize
how important it is to know how to handle the masses of lower
rank soldiers. Only a well trained army is capable of winning
a war. The only way to have a well trained army is through
the Commissioned Soldier. He is responsible for the training,
dedication and devotion of his troops. This is not a training
manual. This handbook merely emphasizes the importance of
authority. Only the strong and strict leader will receive
the respect from his troops that a good leader deserves. Only
troops which are willing to take orders are good troops. Therefore
troops will follow only orders that are given by a strong
leader whom they respect.
Conclusion: there is only one rule on how to train masses
of soldiers: Showing strength and authority to the lower rank
soldiers, the noncommissioned troops. Only the Commissioned
Soldier that interacts on a strong and strict basis with his
troops will lead them to victory in combat...
It hath become necessary to create a means of disciplining
our soldiery. Though the soldiers we are given to work with
are generally obedient and disciplined, on occasion an unruly
soldier will appear in the ranks. It would be foolish to merely
dismiss this able-bodied man, for in these times of war every
hand capable of holding a sword must do so. Nay, dismissal
is not the answer. What, then, are we to do with those who
resist the teachings of discipline? By what means may we save
this soldier from the lure of Chaos and place him firmly back
on the path toward being a useful implement with which to
smite the Chaotic forces? With these questions our Master
did challenge the wisest men in the Temple. I, Sethmantih,
did solve these challenges...
On my journey to find the Serpent Fountain I was troubled
many times with doubt about my quest. Was I doing the right
thing? Was I taking the correct path? How much longer could
I resist the urge to accept failure? I hunted through the
master's chambers, stared into the coffins of those who once
cared for the temple, and searched the library for the keys
and implements necessary to complete the quest. The Master
would only tell me two things; that I would have no reason
to leave the temple, and that somewhere on the path my discipline
would be tested. I speak only in generalities, lest my words
be seen by the wild eyes of one undisciplined. I doubt not
that such a person would die on the way to the water, but
there are wards against death in all its incarnations.
My discipline was indeed tested, and tested harshly. The
key to completing my quest was perseverance. I had to search
the same place many times and not admit defeat; I had to discipline
my mind to keep it from wandering. The hardest part of the
path to the fountain lay just before it, and I bear the scars
on my feet, but, as is taught here, if one can only discipline
the mind, the body can then be trained. I pushed the pain
from my mind, so that I did not feel the acid searing my flesh,
eating away at my skin.
When finally I did reach the fountain, the test was not
over -- to return to the temple proper, I had to brave the
acid again. The test made me strong, obedient, disciplined.
Had I failed, I would be as one of those whose hearts I seek
to skewer; chaotic and undisciplined. Due to the lessons of
discipline I had learned, I was able to not only force the
pain from my mind as the acid tried to eat my legs away, but
steel my flesh against it so that now only the soles of my
feet bear mild scars...
THE WAR OF ORDER AND CHAOS
No one truly knows what happened to cause the war between
the Forces of Chaos and Order about 300 years ago. No one
can say for sure that he knows which devilish thoughts possessed
people to fight each other when they were supposed to love
each other and treat each other with respect. But everyone
hath been paying for it since the war ended. The Order Forces
won the war, and imprisoned the Chaos Forces. But what exactly
did they win? It seems that they miss their brothers and sisters
now. And who is to say that the Order Forces enjoyed throwing
the Chaos Forces into confinement. Going back to the days
before the war, living in peace with the Chaos Forces would
be a dream come true for me...
THE SYMBOL OF DISCIPLINE
The Symbol of Discipline is a reminder of what we, the Initiates
of Discipline, must strive for. Consisting of three prongs,
they symbolize the following: Mind, Body, and Environment.
The mind is the first level of discipline; without Discipline
of the Mind, one cannot master the other levels of discipline.
Discipline of the Body is the second level of discipline,
for one cannot master one's surroundings without first mastering
one's self. The third branch of the symbol represents Discipline
of Environment. This branch, added to represent the superiority
of Order, justifies the military's presence here; if one can
master one's self, one can then master the world around him,
and drive Chaos out from his environment.
The symbols here in our temple are not mere inspiration,
however. The Altar before the serpent statue doth have upon
it two slots. In order to insure the security of our temple,
the automatons are aided by a safeguard against defilers --
bolts of lightning fire from the altar unless the quartz symbol
is placed in the slot on the left side. A bridge spanning
the water around the statue is called into being if the obsidian
symbol is placed in the right slot; if it is not there, none
can gain access to the Water of Discipline.
THE BOOK OF DISCIPLINE
The ultimate wisdom of life may only be reached through
discipline. It takes strength and concentration to follow
the guidelines of discipline. Therefore the weak and distracted
mind will fail. The weak and distracted mind will not have
the power to succeed. And only that power will take thee to
the top. But there is no room for the weak at the top. Only
the strong mind will find a place there.
OUR GREAT LEADERS
The religion of our great nation must have leaders, worthy
leaders. There are things, events and ceremonies, that require
a person of great trust. The nation hath decided to choose
trustworthy people for those positions and give them certain
ranks. Full of respect do we call the leader of the Shrine
of Balance our Great Hierophant. Only the Great Hierophant
can perform the important ceremonies at the Grand Shrine of
Balance. During those ceremonies, however, he receives help
from the leaders of the Shrine of Order and Chaos. They have
the rank of Order Hierophant and Chaos Hierophant.
All three have assistants to help them with their duties;
these are the sub-leaders. These assistants are of high rank
also and we give them the title of Master. These Masters are
the leaders of our Temples. Each one of them is authorized
to perform ceremonies in their own Temple.
OUR BLESSED SERPENT ISLE
Our beloved Serpent Isle is the prettiest country there
is. No place can be more enjoyable for mankind. It is so peaceful.
There is no anger or distrust in the population. Everything
is balanced, people live together well. There cannot be any
other place in any other dimension that could possibly be
more peaceful or more blessed with beauty. Only balance is
responsible for the well-being of this country. Only balance
makes it possible for people to live together in peace. Only
balance will provide good harvests, which provide enough food.
People that have enough to eat are happy and do not have to
worry whether they are going to live to the next day. Balance
is the ultimate way to freedom and peace. The beauty of our
country cannot be put into words. One must go and discover
it for himself.
IS THERE HOPE?
I do not know what to do anymore. I am desperate. We are
all going to die, I know it. I and my children are going to
die and there is no way for me to protect mine own flesh and
blood... It all began with the soldiers entering the city.
Without any warning they attacked us. They began to kill people
immediately, the elderly, the children and us women. Those
heartless and cold-blooded bastards do not care...
Mine only hope is that our men will return in time to defend
and protect us. Our food supplies are frighteningly low. Soon
we all will be starving. I am already eating only the bare
minimum. All my rations I give to my children, hoping that
they will survive until our rescuers arrive. I need to support
them in every way I possibly can, they are our future -- they
are my life. I could not forgive myself if anything happened
to them... I do not know if I have the strength to wait for
the rescue. If there is no chance for us to survive and wait
for them, I will have to choose. The choice is between letting
those murderers enjoy us -- or else...
WAR OF IMBALANCE
This shall be the last entry I make before following my
kinsmen to a better life. 'Tis appropriate, I think, that
I use a newly bound book with the finest vellum; after all,
it may be an Age or more before 'tis found -- if ever.
Before I continue, I should write a few words about mine
homeland -- Serpent Isle. Before the War of Imbalance, the
dreadful war that did tear asunder our beloved homeland, Serpent
Isle was a fair land indeed. The land was in Harmony: our
people were at peace -- secure within our glorious subterranean
cities. The arts prospered under the generous patronage of
our most beloved Hierophant, blessed be his name, and no citizen
went hungry or was bereft of a home. We were content and happy;
we had no reason to suspect that our happiness would not continue
indefinitely. We were so naive.
The War of Imbalance started simply enough, but by the time
'twas over most of our people were slaughtered, our cities
devastated, and the land laid waste. I have been lucky, for
I have survived to write about the tragedy. I cannot say the
same thing about many of my friends -- they are all dead.
Even as I write, the Adepts are scurrying about, preparing
for the great ceremony that shall energize the Wall of Lights.
Soon, I and my surviving comrades shall leave our shattered
land, never to return. I am afraid of the future, but I know
I cannot live in the past. I can only remember the past. I
shall strive to remember the times of joy and try to forget
the ashen, bitter memories of the war.
The Adepts are ready, they have begun the ceremony. I feel
a great surge of power! The light! 'Tis blinding! The Adepts
have succeeded. The Wall of Lights is so beautiful...
A TREATISE ON THE CONSTRUCTION OF LIVING GEMS
The construction of living gems requires many a component
as well as Pure Discipline. This Treatise contains the exact
formulae and incantations which thou dost perform in order
to succeed in the construction of living gems. The magical
fabrication of gems is one thou shouldst be warned about.
For thee and thy kindred, make no attempt if thou dost doubt
thy magical powers. Ice Worms are to be found. The Ice Worm
doth have to be destroyed. Then wrest its heart from the body.
The Worm Heart is cold and hard. The soul of brave warriors
who fight magnificently in combat within the Harvest Moon
period, or any equinox, escape the battlefield and may be
contained within such a gem. Hence the name 'living gem'.
Once infused with the soul of a glorious warrior, such gems
are placed inside the automatons. This is what gives them
THE TRUE BELIEVERS
The true believers are not only to be found at the rituals
and ceremonies. There are many poor souls out there who are
pretending they do not believe in religious gatherings and
activities. They want to make us believe that they do not
need anyone for the sake of their souls. They are wrong, and
deep down in their hearts, they know it, too. Sooner or later
they will attend ceremonies. Most of them do not come back
for a while, but that one appearance rouses their curiosity
enough to attend again. It takes courage to admit that everyone
needs some kind of belief. I understand that and I do not
push for their trust. I know that deep down, underneath all
that ruin, is a soul that wants to be rescued. It takes time,
but I have all the time I ever need. I can wait and I will.
I know that my day will come. And then I will open mine arms
and welcome them into our religious community. There is room
for everyone, no one will be turned away. And no one will
be pressured to join us.
THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR
When a warrior hath demonstrated unswerving Discipline,
the Order Hierophant may approve the creation of the Ultimate
Warrior. The candidate must be willing to cast aside his or
her own body in favor of that of an undying automaton. This
is the highest honor of Order... to serve as Order's warrior
through all time.
The candidate shall be conducted to the chamber with all
pomp and pageantry. Upon the left dais shall stand the inanimate
automaton husk. The candidate shall ascend to the right dais
after the transference button hath been pressed. Once the
bodies have been transferred, the Final Test of Discipline
must be completed. In this, the candidate must strike down
the now-empty husk that he or she formerly knew as his or
her body. Until this is done, the body transfer is not complete
and the process will reverse unless the organic husk is destroyed.
Some few candidates may find themselves unable to withstand
the transference, and as such would normally be considered
failures. But it is the Order Hierophant's wishes that no
stigma be attached to this weakness. The candidate shall be
allowed to live the remainder of his or her life in service
to Order, being an exemplar in all but the Final Test of Discipline.
A SOLDIER'S NOTES
These sheep all went to their deaths with smiles on their
accursed faces! We pulled out their fingernails, seared their
flesh with burning coals, peeled their skin back with rusty
knives, gouged out their eyes with sharp sticks, and still
they said nothing! We must have the answer. But I cannot obtain
the answer to my question now that they all lie dead. Could
there be any truth to the old one's claim that "meditation
leads to enlightenment?" Whatever the answer may be, there
is no time left. We must go. I have ordered the destruction
of the temple -- there must be no trace of this structure
by Issik the Architect
The snowswept surface of Sunrise Isle is totally barren.
No life can live long upon the surface. It is a good thing,
indeed, that the Great Hierophant decreed that it was too
dangerous to allow access to the surface.
The devout follower of Balance will know how to form the
blocks of ice which are necessary in achieving Balance. To
those of you who have forgotten your lessons, take heed: Take
the magic tapers to the Walls of Ice. Therein, use the tapers
upon the walls.
Create Soul Prism: This spell doth enchant a prism so that
it may become the receptacle for a soul. Though powerful,
this spell hath limited applications. The reagents necessary
are: sulfuric ash, blood moss, garlic, mandrake root, spider
silk, and serpent scales.
Create Automata: This spell is actually misnamed, for it
doth not create automata, rather, it repairs them. If thou
dost have a damaged automaton, simply cast this spell over
the body and it shall be fully restored. The necessary reagents
to cast this spell are as follows: sulfuric ash, mandrake
root, spider silk, and serpent scales.
Create Ice: This spell immobilizes a chosen enemy in a block
of ice. After a short period of time, the ice shatters, and
the foe is released. Only two reagents are necessary to cast
this spell: worm heart and spider silk.
Invoke Serpent: This spell summons a snow serpent that is
"friendly" to the caster. The reagents necessary to cast this
spell are as follows: blood moss, garlic, worm heart, spider
silk, and serpent scales.
Serpent Bond: This powerful spell transforms the caster
into a serpent for a short duration. This spell is very useful
for obtaining ingress into places ordinarily inaccessible,
such as a small crawlspace. The reagents necessary to cast
this spell are as follows: blood moss, black pearl, garlic,
worm heart, spider silk, and serpent scales.
Imbalance: This powerful spell is very dangerous. The energy
released by this spell sprays out in a random pattern, usually
destroying whatever is hit. The reagents necessary to cast
this spell are as follows: blood moss, sulfuric ash, worm
heart, nightshade plant, and serpent scales.
I alone have managed to safely return to the surface. Mine
arrogant curiosity was almost mine undoing. The ruined Ophidian
structure in the caverns below the swamp is very dangerous.
My companions fell to the blows of the undead. No monk should
ever return there. I have taken the key that opens the gate
to the area and hidden it in the hollow tree near the southeastern
portion of the ruin in the swamp. I pray that no one shall
ever find that key...
Scattered Verses, Part I
Madness! Madness is all I can see! The world hath turned
inside out. The stars shine blood red... Men are beasts...
Beasts are men... Ashes... Ashes. The End is upon us all...
Snakes leering in the void... Dancing a dance of death. The
vision is over. I am without Sight...
Scattered Verses, Part II
I see the Hero From Another World ringing the bells! I am
not there. I am dead. Ring the bells. Oh, joy! What sweet
music the bells make I am dreaming. I hear the bells and I
Scattered Verses, Part III
I See the frozen waste...
The Hero From Another World is there...
I See men who are not men covered in fur...
I See the Hero From Another World strike...
No! The world is collapsing! I cannot breathe!
Scattered Verses, Part IV
The Hero From Another World will meet the descendants of
the Silver Captain under the sign of the Bull. The Hero From
Another World will be betrayed by a follower of the Other...
Scattered Verses, Part V
In the City of Mages,
on the Isle of Beyond,
Doth the Hero walk
Mages with two faces prance about
To prove his worth,
The Hero From Another World
Must survive the perils of Freedom...
The Mandrake Root, by Trexin the Gardener
The mandrake root is a short-stemmed plant that hath a fleshy,
often forked root, somewhat resembling a man. This tuber,
though not particularly pleasant to gaze upon, doth have useful
qualities. The root seems to add power to certain spells of
the greater circles. The mandrake root, contrary to what my
colleague Moxa thinks, can indeed be found on our lonely isle.
The root can be found growing in the swamp that is located
on the northern part of the island. Most peculiarly, the root
doth seemingly appear at random times...
The Berry Bush, by Trexin the Gardener I have discovered a
wonderful plant that I have named the Berry Bush. The fruit
of this plant hath a wonderfully bittersweet, tangy taste.
Furthermore, the bush doth grow well in our intemperate clime
and needs little maintenance to produce an abundant crop.
I returned home to the Bull as soon as I received Mother's
letter. It was not easy to relinquish my command, but Mother
needed me, and so here I am. I have examined the grounds and
found nothing. Mother says she heard noises from the cellar
the night Father disappeared. When I investigated, I found
crates overturned, but nothing else. I feel so useless! If
only I had something, some shred of evidence indicating what
became of Father...
Welcome to the Sleeping Bull Inn! Our inn hath been owned
by the same family for four generations. We have a long tradition
of service. We will do our best to ensure that thy stay at
the inn will be most enjoyable. If thou hast any questions,
please inquire of Mistress Devra or Master Angus.
This day Silverpate came to see me. The black-harted demon
came to glote, and to give me scroll and kwill. He said that
I could rite whate'er I wanted, fer I would never see daylite
agin. I fear he is rite. Silverpate beleves that I stole from
him, the paranoid old coot! I ne'er woud beleve me mates when
they spoke of the "littel demons" in the cap'in's pate, tellin
him what to do. Corse, I beleved em rite enuf when ol' Pate
tole me these things hisself! Alas, I lerned too late to prevent
me imprisonment. I figure ol' Pate will ne'er read me words,
and if he do, then so be it.
Whomever ye be that reads me words, be warned aginst Cap'in
Silverpate. He uses majic wardrobes to spy on his own mates!
The littel swiches at the Bull don't work, the cap'in said,
unless the "Master Wardrobe" is used. This "Master Wardrobe"
be sichuated down in these here catacomes. I also herd the
evil-harted bastard yammer bout sum Serpint Gate. Ol' Pate
said the gate was hidden. It be rite hard to be thinkin strate,
but I think the cap'n said something bout too torches markin
the hidden entrans. Maybe this Serpint Gate cood help thee.
Corse, it be likely that no bloke will e'er read me scribling...
Pate thinks everyone be after his trezhure. So distrustful
be ol' Pate, he even spies on his own famly! Let it be nown
that I, Bren, cheef bosun on the Black Gull, were a pirate
who ne'er turned aginst one o' his own...
MAGIC SCROLLS - A PRIMER
The process of inscribing scrolls with mystic runes is beyond
the scope of this primer. Using these enchanted scrolls, however,
is a trivial matter. To unleash the power of the spell, simply
unroll the parchment. The Runes of Power, and the scroll itself,
will be totally consumed by the energies that are released.
Beloved Shamino: Right beloved Sir, I recommend me to thee,
greeting thee well and sending thee my blessings. I have to
confess and apologize to thee for I have looted the King's
private arms. I beg of thee not to condemn me too hastily
for I committed that horrible action when the castle was under
siege. Danger was everywhere and so were the goblins. Thou
wert not here and I had to take action. We need thee at the
castle, prithee, when art thou returning? Life without thee
is an endless torment. The goblins seemed to be a deliverance
more than a threat to me. I am right sorry for this and wish
it hath been otherwise. I wait daily for thee to come hither.
Faithfully, thy Beatrix
I know I did evil things whilst I was under the control
of the Bane. In order to atone for the harm I have caused,
I shall sacrifice myself to the Crematorium. If mine ashes
can help restore the balance, then I might be partially redeemed
for mine evil acts. Farewell, Dupre
Me Map, but I don't need to say that, because if it's anybody
but me what's looking at this, I don't want to tell where
me treasure is, so read no further, ye dog, lest I leave yer
fate to the briny deep! This is dead-reckoning right, but
I'm awfully drunk and mebbe I'm holdin' this thing upside-down.
98S,28W 33 Paces past the rock, excludin' that break I took
fer drinkin'. 11 Paces east of the whatever that blasted thing
is. 30 Paces, I think, because I was staggerin' about a bit
and I stumbled and lost me count a couple o' times, past whatever
me stinkin' map says is supposed to be there; I was sober
when I drew that beauty. Unless this is me what's readin'
this, I hope the treasure's already gone, ye thief!
I have paid thee -- and paid thee well -- to fulfill the
contract. Only fools would pay a great sum for an easy task...
And I am no fool. Remember, I have chosen thee because thou
art the best weapon available to me at the moment. Make no
mistake, the Avatar is not an easy target and certainly the
most challenging thou hast ever had. Dispose of the Avatar
quickly. Destroy this note. No evidence should be left behind
My dearest, I beg thy forgiveness for my behavior last night.
This difficulty with the Avatar hath disrupted my performance,
but I assure thee that once we have taken care of , I will
hold a private celebration thou shalt not soon forget...
As they lower me down,
To this hole in the ground,
I scream for help,
But they can't hear a sound.
I scratch on this lid,
My fingers they bleed.
They plant me deep,
Like an evil seed.
Now my bones decompose,
My flesh doth rot,
But soon I will rise,
And torture the lot.
Right Heartily and Beloved Father, I recommend me to thee,
letting thee know I am doing exceedingly well! Though I miss
thee nd my beloved sister, Alyssand, I am so excited. I have
been learning so much magic, thou wouldst not believe thine
eyes. I am good. Honest. I swear to thee, that's what the
Mages here are saying. 'Tis fun, but frightening as well.
I am a dedicated student, Father, thou canst be proud of me.
And Alyssand, too. I miss thee so much. Thou shouldst visit.
The Palace is a sight to see. Gorgeous! These Mages are incredible!
Learning how to be a Mage is not easy, but I love it as much
as I miss thee. Thou art on my mind everyday. I hope to see
thee soon. Eternal love, Freli
To thee, fine warrior, who hast made it this far: If thou
seekest to be a Knight of Monitor, thou must be willing to
shed thy blood for the defense of others. To prove thy resolve,
take this claw and use it upon thy person. Let thy blood be
-- Shmed, Master of Knight's Test
To thee, fine warrior, who hast made it this far: If thou
seekest to be a Knight of Monitor, thou must mingle thy blood
with the ashes of our ancient foe, Gurnordir the goblin king.
Thy blood pledges vengeance against our enemies, and will
give thee thy totem animal, the key to thy soul.
-- Shmed, Master of Knight's Test
NOTE FROM CANTRA
I love thee, father. I hope thou dost kill more than thy
share of goblins. Come home soon. Cantra
Note to myself for further exploration of the North: I seem
to have lost the Serpent Tooth I took from the Mad Mage. Need
to check the area near the savages, as that was where I last
remember having it with me. Frigidazzi
What follows is an excerpt from my translation of an ancient
manuscript. The translation is crude since I do not as yet
fully understand the Serpent Runes, but I think thou wilt
find this very exciting. Until we meet again,
-- Erstam, thy devoted servant
I write this in great haste, for I can already hear the
forces of Order breaching the keep walls. I know not how this
missive will survive to reach the outside lands, or for that
matter, future generations. Mine only hope is that this speedily-drafted
work will offer record of our hallowed philosophy. For our
culture to have any chance of enduring the ages, someone,
somewhere must find this. Please, reader, I beseech thee,
spread the word of our peoples. Release the spirit of our
word and learn from the wisdom of the past.
FILBERCIO'S LOVE LETTERS
My darling Rotoluncia, I know thy feelings about my letters,
but I cannot help myself -- I think of thee day and night!
Thou art the light of my miserable existence. Thou art like
the sun, blinding all who doth gaze upon thy beauty. Thy lips
are more luscious than the sweetest fruit. Thy skin is smoother
than the most glorious rose. Thou art the essence of womanhood;
none can surpass thee! Please, I beg of thee, say that thou
wilt be mine! Anxiously awaiting thy reply, Filbercio
My darling Rotoluncia, I know that thou dost love me as
much as I love thee. Let us forget all of the intrigue that
plagues this city and flee to the mainland! I can have built
for us a modest love nest where we may spend the rest of our
days in bliss! Thy servant, Filbercio
My darling Rotoluncia, I tried to sleep after our dalliance
this night, yet I cannot. The feel of thy silken hair and
the sweet taste of thy lips linger. Oh, my darling, I cannot
wait until I see thee again. I feel that I shall go mad if
I cannot make thee mine! Thy lover, Filbercio
Rotoluncia, I saw thee staring at that pig Torrissio at
the banquet last night and I know now that thine affections
shown toward me were false. Thou art a cow and a shabby sorceress
as well! Do not try to pretend otherwise, for I know the truth
now. I want nothing more from thee ever again! Filbercio
LETTER FROM POMGIRDUN
Marsten, Lord of Monitor: The destruction of thine enemies
is certain. My brave Goblin warriors have already plundered
the Fawn Tower, and the Wolves which guarded it. Next, we
shall strike the Bull Tower, and the Bears which serve there.
Hail to victory! Soon, the Wolves and Bears shall cease to
trouble thee. Then Monitor and the Goblins shall live in peace,
and thou shalt be King of the Monitorians. Do not let this
messenger fall into the hands of our enemies. -- Pomdirgun,
Chieftain of the Goblin Horde
LETTER FROM MARSTEN
Honor be to thee, Pomdirgun, Chieftain of the Goblin Horde:
Letting thee know that all of our plans in these parts fare
well. I have learned from the Wolves that they plan to launch
a patrol in the early morning hours of the seventh day of
the new moon. If thou dost ambush the patrol, then it shall
be easy for thee to overrun Fawn Tower itself. The Wolves
shall be critically weakened, and the City of Fawn shall quake
in fear! But if thou canst, spare the life of the leader of
the patrol. She is a favorite of my liege. We beg of thee
not to let this messenger fall into the hands of our enemies,
the Wolves. -- Spektor, writing on behalf of Lord Marsten
Honor be to thee, Pomdirgun, Chieftain of the Goblin Horde:
Letting thee know that all of our plans in these parts fare
well. Having learned from our successful experience with Fawn
Tower, we have decided to withdraw, on the fourth night of
the coming moon, as many troops as possible from Bull Tower.
The Bears shall be marching westward on the plains, and shall
be easily slaughtered. Then thou canst take the Tower, and
plunder the Inn of the Sleeping Bull. We want to remind thee
of the supreme importance not to let this messenger fall into
the hands of our enemies, the Wolves and the Bears. -- Marsten,
King of Monitor
LETTER IN FREEDOM
Old man, if thou dost truly wish to survive Freedom, but
dost feel that thou canst live to tell the tale of Lorthondo's
final test, thou hast only to serve in my slave pit. Tend
to my pets and I shall personally show thee to the door and
to the blue skies of daylight and freedom. Guard my nightmare
and care for him well. He is a treasure and a daemon in one.
Take him through the teleporter once each day and let him
feel the grass beneath his hooves. Take care, for one strike
of his hoof could kill an old fool such as thou. Be thou sure
to keep Sabrina from him. I fear that she doth frighten him.
I find it strange that such a wild, untamed creature such
as that should be frightened of her touch. Then again, mayhaps
I can fathom why.
Lastly, take great care of my small furry prize. Do not
be fooled by its diminutive size, it hath taken the lives
of many a foolhardy man who dared to approach thinking it
might make a tasty morsel. Thou shouldst treat it with as
much respect as thou wouldst bestow upon me. If thou dost
not, either one of us could end thy miserable existence. In
the supply room, thou wilt find a year's worth of carrots
for Buggs. Feed him but one per day. Place the carrots upon
his golden plate -- 'tis the only way that he will feed. He
is of royal lineage -- a born predator. If thou dost not,
thou mayest find that thou art his next meal. Serve me well,
old man, and thou mayest live to see the outside of this prison
To me fellow trappers: Greetings to ye. I will be heading
north when ye be reading this message. Make sure ye guard
the cave and protect our goods well. If I find out ye let
some ne'er-do-well steal our goods, I'll personally skin every
one of ye bastards, hang yer hide on me walls, and eat yer
black hearts for supper! By the way, don't be lookin fer the
wonderful glass sword that appeared after the last storm,
for I took it with me. I be headin' back to the North. This
fancy sword should be mighty handy for slaying some dragon
or other fearsome beast... Slaughter a beast in mine honor.
I, Purlonio, merchant of Moonshade, am about to tell my
tale. Back in the early days of the Sosarian colonization
of Serpent Isle, I had accumulated -- I have to tell thee
-- a massive fortune in the city. After a most unusual dream,
I called upon an enchantress for help. She was expensive,
but of good and right advice. Drogeni, the Wizard, warned
me that I was about to lose all of my cherished wealth in
the near future and that there was nothing she could do to
prevent this from happening. I thought I could outsmart Fate...
I took all of my possessions, all of my gold, in a ship
to this cave in the far northern reaches for safe storage.
I hired Drogeni to create a series of tunnels in the rear
of the cave so that a magic map would be required and no one
could survive without it. Thereupon, I had the wizard conjure
an Ice Dragon to guard my riches. Once this was done, we sailed
back to the southern plains where I rid myself of the enchantress
so that no one would ever know the secret to my riches. Unfortunately,
upon the death of the wizard, the magical map disintegrated.
Fearing that the prophecy had come true, I went back to the
cave and tried to find the route to my riches. To this day,
I have not found my treasure.
In my life as a criminal, as they call me, I have had many
a task to overcome. None before was as hard as the ones I
am about to describe. This is done so that thou mayest save
thy time and thy life. Of all the traps I had to overcome,
the most interesting ones were the spear traps. First of all,
thou needest to enter the caretaker's room. After many an
observation and many more days than thou wouldst think, I
discovered the routine of the caretaker. He usually is on
patrol during the whole afternoon. He makes his rounds at
noon and midnight. In his storehouse, thou shouldst find barrels
and chests. Rummaging through the barrels I found a hidden
lever. That lever, I came to realize later, turns off the
spear traps in the corridor. Make good use of that, my friend.
Blessings upon thee.
To My Good Brethren and Comrades In Arms, After many long,
arduous and harrowing adventures I have collected this considerable
treasure. While this fair measure of wealth would be enough
to keep a man happy for the rest of his days, I cannot possess
it without remembering my good fellow knights -- many to whom
I owe my very life. It is to thee that I leave this bountiful
reward. It is secured by the soundest means that I currently
have at my disposal. To obtain it, one need only use THE KEY.
Hark, adventurer, and read these words well. Many know me
as Gannt the Bard, singer of songs, and writer of fine poetry
for all to enjoy. Though many know of me, most do not know
of my life, or at least of how I came to this end. Read, and
read well, dear adventurer. If thou hast any justice in thine
heart, or any pity in thy soul, then thou wilt seek vengeance
for mine untimely death. If thou, hearty adventurer, hast
any sense of duty to avenge evils, then thou must seek out
the craven and cowardly Captain Stokes of the rusty old bucket
'The Mustang' and exact just payment, for alas, since I am
not of this world, I cannot.
One day as I was at the Inn of Sleeping Bull, plucking my
lute, not bothering anyone, but practicing my trade, in walked
the swine, Captain Stokes, billowing foul fog upon us with
his ill-smelling fag. Seeing that no one in the fair establishment
could stomach the pungent smell of his tobacco-like rot, I
dared to ask him to put it out, for the sake of all our healths.
He stared at me, then turned a blind eye. I went back to strumming
my lute, 'til again the smell began to bring tears to mine
eyes. Again I asked him, begged him to stop, but again he
Finally, as gentle ladies began to leave for air, and good
children began to cough and cry from the Captain's reeking
root, I tried once more. This time, though, he answered with
the blade of his dagger. He thrust well through my lute and
into mine entrails, stuffing it deep into my belly. He grinned
and twisted the blade, not once nor twice, but thrice! Being
but a humble bard and quite mortal, I had little choice but
to expire. I fell in a pool of mine own blood, mine hand strumming
my last chord as I fell.
I ask thee, I beg of thee to give me peace, and exact vengeance
for my death. Before thee is the key to his rotten hovel which
thou mayest find to the west of Fawn, above the forest of
Knight's Test. Many ill-begotten instruments doth he hide
in his house of ill-wares. Beware them! Please, noble adventurer,
exact justice for my death, and exact the toll from that evil
Captain Stokes. Do this and let my spirit rest peacefully...
THE ART OF WINEMAKING
The art of winemaking is not a difficult trade; indeed,
making fine wine is the simplest of tasks. There are those
laymen, however, who doth think making wine is some great
secret. Nothing could be further from the truth! Sorcery hath
made the process of making wine very easy, but sorcery cannot
make the wine taste good. To make great wine, thou needest
but one commodity -- great grapes! That is the secret to making
a truly great vintage, one that shall be remembered by all
Dear Avatar, All of the portents indicate that this Quest
to Find Batlin shall severely tax thine abilities. Consequently,
I have ordered the armouries of the kingdom opened in order
to equip thee and thy good companions. Thou shalt be given
these things --
The Glass Sword, which can slay any foe (but which is destroyed
in the act of such slaughter).
The MageBane, a fabled weapon which thou didst recover in
thy previous encounter with Batlin. It steals the magic from
sorcerers who oppose thee.
The Daemon Sword which thou didst obtain at the Forge of Virtue.
It is truly a terrible weapon, but thou wilt surely need it.
Beware the Daemon within!
Rudyom's Wand, which doth make blackrock to explode.
The strange Serpent of Blackrock, which thou didst obtain
from netherworlds during thy most recent adventure. Its powers
are unknown, but those who gave it thee promised that it would
be useful to thee soon.
A spellbook, to which hath been added every spell that could
be speedily obtained.
For thee to wear, a set of armour of the best enchantments:
breastplate, helm, and gauntlets.
For Iolo the Bard: a crossbow, which he doth wield so well.
For noble Dupre: a Magic Shield which I have prepared for
For Shamino the Ranger: a Magic Bow, and a goodly supply of
Burst Arrows, which he shall no doubt use to good purpose.
As well as such common items as torches, a pair of swamp
boots, a good dagger, and much food for an extended journey.
Travel in safety, and may the villain Batlin soon fall into
thine hands! Also, I hope that thou shalt soon find Iolo's
lost wife, the goodwoman Gwenno. -- Lord British, thy liege.
The list of items which we found ourselves with after the
Prepared by Shamino.
With additional notes by Dupre.
And further comments by Iolo, since being freed from that
vile Monitorian prison cell!
A pinecone from the northern woods.
A pair of moonsilk stockings, such as the enchantress Columna
A funerary urn containing the Ashes of the Dead, taken from
the Caves of Monitor.
The missing apparatus from the laboratory of Erstam, the so-called
A pumice rock from the fiery depths of some dungeon.
The engagement ring belonging to Alyssand of Fawn.
The elegant fur cap which Filbercio the MageLord purchased
for his favorite, the sorceress Frigidazzi.
The well-worn slippers belonging to Devra, the mistress of
the Inn of the Sleeping Bull.
The ceremonial breastplate of the Priestess of Beauty, who
is Kylista of Fawn. A very attractive lady, I should add.
A penguin egg, such as may be found in the ice fields of the
A grisly brush made from the bones of some poor victim of
the Goblins. How foul!
A bottle of that excellent vintage of wine sold by the Rangers
of Moonshade. Why, I should sample some now...
Jeweled coins from the City of Beauty, Fawn.
The skull of a great mountain bear.
The severed hand from one of the Mad Mage's experiments. It
is not dead, yet not living -- it doth not decay.
One of the common shields used by the Pikemen of Monitor.
The dangerous mineral known as Stoneheart, which is used to
produce the illegal reagent Bloodspawn.
Dearest Avatar, I would like to congratulate thee from the
bottom of mine heart, on obtaining thy spellbook. That was
not an easy task. Thou didst accomplish it most admirably.
Also, I have been told that thou art asking questions about
me. I think I would be the best person from whom to obtain
the ultimate answers to thy questions. That is, the ones concerning
myself. For all those reasons and so many more, I would like
for thee to come to my manor. Frigidazzi.
Dearest Avatar, Love and Honor be to thee. Letting thee
know that I cannot wait to see thee again. I cannot think
of time far from thy strong person and handsome body. Thy
broad shoulders and great arms are such an open invitation
for a woman like me. Thine eyes, Avatar, so piercing yet so
full of love. I could feel that love during thy last visit.
I beg of thee, come visit me tonight. Thou dost remember where
my manor is, dost thou not? I have a very rare spell (a true
tongue-twister) I could teach thee and thou wouldst be the
only one enjoying that treasured spell of mine. Once more,
I beg of thee, do come tonight and do come alone. Thy love,
Dearest Avatar, A thousand apologies is what I present thee
with. I am the one who caused thee to be arrested and I cannot
forgive myself. Thou hauntest my dreams. Memories of thee
flash in front of mine eyes and the only way I can solve this
nightmare is by presenting thee with a very special gift.
I beg of thee to accept these Serpent Earrings, a token of
mine affection for thee, Avatar. Frigidazzi.
Dearest Avatar, Love and Honor be to thee. Letting thee
know that I cannot wait to see thee again. I cannot think
of time far from thy strong and good-hearted person. Thine
eyes, Avatar, so piercing yet so full of love. I could feel
that love during thy last visit. I beg of thee, come visit
me tonight. I have a very rare spell I could teach thee and
thou wouldst be the only one learning it. Once more, I beg
of thee, do come tonight and do come alone. Sincerely thy,
Fedabiblio, this is a message to let thee know that all
is not well. I desperately need thine help. I beg of thee
to answer my call. Thou must needs use the Crystal Ball. Gustacio.
CAPTAIN HAWK'S TREASURE
To the right good Avatar, Thou must not think thy quest
is done. For I offer ye a great challenge. To ye I leave my
treasure -- if thou canst find it. Within this booty lies
a Serpent Crown, waiting for ye to discover its hiding place.
Avatar, I have in my possession something extremely valuable
which would be even more vital to thee. Thou couldst make
good use of it, believe me. If thou art interested (and thou
shouldst be), come to the cabin in the forest. Stefano.
From Flindo To Torrissio:
Dearest and most Powerful Mage, I recommend me to thee as
well as the bearer of this message. This letter of introduction
entitles the bearer to a chat with thee. Trust thy righteous
friend, Torrissio, the bearer is worth thy time. I thank thee
for thine understanding. Treat the bearer the way thou wouldst
treat me. With a right good will, sincerely thy, Flindo
To Melino and Columna:
Dearest and most Powerful Mages, I recommend me to thee as
well as the bearer of this message. This letter of introduction
entitles the bearer to a chat with you. Trust thy righteous
friend, the bearer is worth your time. I thank you for your
understanding. Treat the bearer the way you would treat me.
With a right good will, faithfully, Flindo
I have made the most wonderful discovery about the Comb
that I took from that empty-headed ruler of Fawn! No longer
shall I be forced to content myself with the bumbling attentions
of Melino, my pitiful excuse for a husband! For upon using
the Comb on myself, I have become beautiful and desirable!
No one will ever guess now that Mosh and I are twins! Now
I may use my wits for better things... like the Adept Torrissio!
Know, adventurer, that to proceed onward thou must pass
three puzzles. At the first test, throw two down. At the second
test: throw three down to get eight. At the third test: throw
four down to get twelve. If the levers are not in the correct
position when the button is depressed, thou wilt surely be
MY LIFE AND MY BELIEFS
I do not have much time left. I hope it will be enough time
to write everything down, before THEY come to take me. And
THEY will come... I came here to this Temple full of love
and inspiration. All I wanted was to read the writings of
artistic truth. The wise men would talk to me and I wanted
to listen to them. But then it happened... I did everything
right, I followed the rules, but I still got confused. After
fasting for two days in the meditation room and staring at
the red and black floor, I was still waiting for a sign. A
sign which would show me the right path to follow. And finally,
I could rejoice. I found my calling and I was taken to the
Pool of Dedication.
But then the soldiers came and destroyed everything. They
killed the Great Hierophant of Chaos in the garden. Somehow
the people could save the Sceptre of Enlightenment. They were
able to hide it beneath the lectern... I hope for the safety
of my brother Sethys, for he doth have the key to the Altar
of Tolerance. The Great Hierophant had entrusted him with
the key, moments before the soldiers arrived... I cannot hope
for mine own safety, for I am sitting here now, awaiting my
death. The Order fanatics will come soon and with them my
death is arriving...
FOLLOWERS OF ORDER
True follower of Order do not despair! The Hierophant hath
led us to a new world via passage through the Wall of Lights!
Though thou wert not here to make the passage, fear not. Some
day thou too wilt join us. If thou wishest to enter into the
Temple of the Hierophant thou must merely place the symbols
of Order upon the pedestal indicated by the plaque. Once the
three artifacts have been placed one at a time, the door will
If thou art a true disciple thou wilt have read the scrolls
that contain the words of wisdom that thou needest to decipher
the plaque's meaning. The sacred Library of the Hierophant
shall remain secure from those who art not of Order. For if
thou art not true, thou wilt never enter into the Hierophant's
temple. Behold! Thou art worthy to cross to the Temple of
Balance! Within my pages lie the bridges to the great chasms.
When thou dost reach the great pillars, stand between them
and read my words once more.
Day 24: Still looking for the miser's treasure. Fair wind
and weather all day. The men are as excited as ever. Plundered
a passing ship, appropriated some gold and wine. Lost one
man in the fight.
Day 31: Very stormy weather and worse at night. No encounter.
Day 32: Uneventful except for repairs from last night's storm.
Day 40: This hideout is not easy to find. The men are becoming
Day 41: Ice filling the horizon! Temperature hath dropped.
We are freezing. The men complain they have never seen such
weather this time of the year. Burning more and more oil to
stay warm. Our provisions are diminishing rapidly.
Day 45: Strange how ice magnifies all. Leaden sky is upon
us. On the word of a pirate, we will pierce through this as
a sword through soft bellies! A day of dead calm.
Day 54: Was forced to hang a brace of men who stole some food
from the cook. The weather combined with our disappointing
search for the miser's base hath created an unbearable atmosphere.
Ice is surrounding us and it feels as though we are imprisoned
in this place.
Day 55: We had a storm last night. Two men were found frozen
on the quarter-deck. One man missing. He most likely went
overboard due to the dense and damp fog, in that cold, inky
black night. This treasure hunt is costing us too many men,
and might cost us even more...
Day 56: We are wedged in by an icefloe. Food is running low.
Frozen land all around us, the ship is trapped. And so are
Day 57: Much arguing about rations. We are down to our last
portion. We are but a few survivors, bundled in our rags.
The terror of the seas, HA! We would not scare a mouse these
Day 58: Finishing each other is what we have been doing for
the last twenty-four hours. Such a waste! 'Tis only the two
of us now and a portion of food, a single portion of food.
Yet I shall not give in!
Day 17 -- Everyone is overjoyed that we have actually reached
the northern marches, including myself. I look forward to
setting camp and finding treasure!
Day 22 -- We were forced to kill a pair of wolves near the
Day 28 -- The men are upset that no gold hath been found...
However, I remain confident of our venture.
Day 40 -- Finding more wolves than gold.
Day 41 -- Gold. At last!
Day 45 -- Women and children are finding gold nuggets. How
exciting! This is fabulous! 'Tis finally paying.
Day 69 -- More have been eaten alive. Wolves. More wolves.
Men behaving like wolves. Worse than wolves. They are after
our gold. For them, life is suddenly worthless. How could
they value a nugget more than its true worth?
Day 108 -- No one can be trusted. Who will be the next target?
Hopefully, I will survive and my gold will not be stolen.
Day 121 -- Something horrible happened to Hamlin. He was found
with his throat slit and, of course, his gold was missing.
This worthless gold that he hath painstakingly gathered killed
him. So, this is what it hath come to... Goldthirsty and bloodthirsty
Day 127 -- I have finally found a vein of gold, from whence
I retrieved a small quantity with my pick.
Day 148-149 -- I lay awake on my bedroll all night until dawn,
cannot seem to be able to sleep. Too many angry thoughts disturbing
my mind. At daybreak, I rose in a state of exhaustion.
Day 167 -- More men are fighting amongst themselves. I am
so weary. Is this what I wanted? The encampment is split into
factions. Now, I will cease writing and rest by the fire,
gathering much needed strength for tomorrow.
Day 183 -- Draygan betrayed us. Who would have thought it?
I think bitterly of his treachery. The ship is burnt. We are
doomed. The howling is getting closer...
HAZARD'S LEDGER - PELTS
Sales by customer
Expressed in monetari
Glendor, 3 pelts - 90
Miri, 1 pelt - 50
Tranch, 6 pelts - 180
Falco, 3 pelts - 90 Autumn
Cellia of Monitor, 4 pelts - 88
Voldin of Fawn, 2 pelts - 90
Tornaldo of Moonshade, 3 pelts - 1035
Yelinda of Fawn, 4 pelts - 138
Jorvin of Fawn, 1 pelt - 34
Marsten of Monitor, 4 pelts - 88
Brendann of Monitor, 2 pelts - 69
Fedabiblio of Moonshade, 1 pelt - 34
Cellia of Monitor, 2 pelts - 63
Torrissio of Moonshade, 4 pelts - 140
Cellia of Monitor, 1 pelt - 35
Karl of Monitor, 1 pelt - 25
Garth of Fawn, 2 pelts - 79
Marnok, 1 pelt - 35
BRIGGIO'S BOOK OF ASTONISHING THINGS
A compiled volume of items of interest both magical and mundane
by Briggio of Moonshade
In this volume, compiled for easy reference, are some of
the many fascinating constructions I have found during my
researches. These items range from interesting uses for mundane
items to fascinating miscarriages of magic.
Wands: A trio of terrible weaponry. The three identified
varieties of magical wand all seem to have been made for the
express purpose of changing the combat-weak spellcaster into
a battle-ready automaton. And, for those with the ability
to keep them from losing their potency (no small feat of magic,
mind thee, but simple for anyone capable of crafting the wand
in the first place), they are perhaps the most formidable
weapons of their size. Fire Wand: This wand releases a bolt
of flaming death. According to all known texts on the subject,
the carnage was called "amazing."
Lightning Wand: The effect of a bolt of lightning as it
bursts forth from the wand is as devastating as its counterpart,
the fire wand. However, according to one of its proponents,
"the corpses look and smell much less offensive."
Magician's Wand: While only slightly more lethal than the
typical bow, this wand is rendered quite effective due to
two interesting facets: Its damage is of a most magical nature
and more than powerful against monsters with a predilection
for challenging mages, and, it NEVER ceases to function. If
thou art interested in power and duration, this is the wand
FireDoom Staff: Lethality itself. This staff, which hurls
exploding fireballs that actually seek out a target, is perhaps
the most lethal of all magical weapons created in the era
of human-gargoyle cooperation. But, as with most of the more
powerful magic weapons, its limited life means it may fail
thee at the worst of times.
Glass Swords : A historical legacy of death. These single-use
swords will almost always kill any creature in a single blow,
but they are seldom useful for a second opponent.
Other Miscellaneous Magical Weaponry. As a general case,
any person with a modicum of magical talent can identify magical
weapons, armour and other apparatus by their pulsating glow.
Often, however, the color indicates even more about the item
than merely the existence of the enchantment. For example,
a green field often denotes a poisoning weapon.
Burst Arrows: An arrow of myriad targets. The arrow functions
as a normal arrow, but upon impact, explodes into a thousand
flying shards of death.
Venom Dagger : The assassin's tool. This shimmering green
dagger is actually the enchanted tooth of a poisonous sea
serpent, joined to the hilt of a normal dagger. Its envenomed
blade injects a slow poison into its victim, but it frequently
breaks. It is the perfect assassination weapon (see Alagner's
History, Assassination of Baron Johann IV (page 54)).
Stone Harpy: Unnatural beast. The stone harpy is the creation
of the twisted mind of the magus. It is reputed to be magically
triggered by the close approach of any creature.
DRINKING SONGS DUPRE TAUGHT ME
VOLUME ONE - MAIDS IN TRADES
Come all of ye trades and ye tradesmen,
and let ye be wise that are fools.
But remember each day that your trade would decay
if a maid did not look to your tools.
The blacksmith, the smokey old blacksmith,
'tis known as a jolly old fellow.
But his iron would burn old, and his fire would grow cold,
If a maid did not blow up the bellows.
And then there's the candlestick maker,
he works up the tallow so quick.
But his craft would be marred, and the works not get hard,
If a maid did not hold up the wick.
The ploughman, the jolly old ploughman,
he follows the plow in the silt.
But 'tis ne'er a clod turned, if a maid had not learned him,
To drive the blade up to the hilt.
The brewer, the jolly old brewer,
he maketh a very fine ale.
But his brew would be waste, if there's no maid to taste,
And make sure that it doesn't grow stale.
So come all ye journeymen, craftsmen,
and all that are apprenticed to trade.
For 'tis ne'er a screw or a nut would be turned,
If it weren't for the help of a maid!
DRINKING SONGS DUPRE TAUGHT ME
VOLUME TWO - ROLL THY LEG OVER
If all the young ladies were little white rabbits,
I'd be a hare, and teach them bad habits!
Roll thy leg over, roll thy leg over,
Roll thy leg over the man in the moon.
If all the young ladies were bricks in a pile,
I'd be a mason and lay them in style!
If all the young ladies were cocks in the hay,
I'd be a hen, and I'd have a good lay.
If all the young ladies were bats in a steeple,
and I were a bat, there'd be more bats than people.
If all the young ladies were bells in a tower,
and I were a clapper, I'd ring every hour!
If all the young ladies were doors of stout wood,
and I were a knocker, I'd bang them up good!
If all the young ladies were stones in a mill,
and I were some grain between them, I'd spill...
If all the young ladies were coconuts sweet,
I'd suck out their juices and chew on their meat.
If all the young ladies were birds in their nests,
I'd be an egg and lie under their breasts.
VETRON'S GUIDE TO WEAPONS AND ARMOUR
THEIR EFFECTIVENESS AND VALUE
Here are listed, for easy comparison, various weapons and
their effects upon opponents. Consider them to be rated on
a scale of 1 to 100, with the lower valued weapons being less
effective upon thine adversary:
Axe, two-handed: 10
Blowgun: 1, causes enemy to fall asleep and be poisoned
Hammer, two-handed: 9
Main gauche: 2
Powder keg: 16
Sword, two-handed: 11
Throwing axe: 4
Armour and shields and their protection effectiveness are
described here to permit the informed soldier the opportunity
to select the armour best suited to his or her fighting style:
Chain armour: 2
Chain coif: 2
Chain leggings: 2
Crested helm: 3
Curved heater: 3
Great helm: 4
Kidney belt: 1
Leather armour: 1
Leather boots: 1
Leather collar: 1
Leather gloves: 1
Leather helm: 1
Leather leggings: 1
Plate armour: 4
Plate leggings: 3
Scale armour: 2
Spiked shield: 2
Wooden shield: 2
Here is a list of the better-known enchanted weapons:
Magic arrow: 4
Magic axe: 8, can be thrown
Magic bow: 12
Magic sword: 7, very accurate
Glass sword: 127, breaks
Magic armour: 5,
Magic gauntlets: 3,
Magic gorget: 4,
Magic helm: 5,
Magic leggings: 4,
Magic shield: 4
THE ART OF FIELD DRESSING
Though I personally advocate the use of healing herbs and
more cleanly bandaging environments, the steps told in this
treatise will suffice until better healing care becomes available.
Follow these steps carefully, and thou wilt have no trouble
forming a reliable, if not perfect, way to prevent serious
blood-loss. Remember, however, that there is no care as good
as clean sheets, a sturdy bed, and proper attention!
As long as one doth have shears, cloth, and a conscious
mind, thou wilt have little fear of bleeding to death on the
corpse-littered fields of battle. Simply cut the cloth into
strips and bandages. Quickly placing the center of the bandage
over the wound, wrap the strip around and around the bleeding
area. As the cloth begins to soak with blood, it will combine
with the natural healing aspects of the body to staunch the
flow of blood and to quicken the healing process. In no time,
thou wilt be ready to travel again (though I advise this travel
be to the house of a competent healer!).
The observations enclosed herein are based on mine experiments.
Reader, for thy sake and thy thirst for knowledge, I have
decided to provide thee with the following accounts. Long
ago, when I accidentally landed on this world, the primitive
sentients living here erected a temple to me and my 'chariot.'
But they were boring and impetuous! Soon, the cats emerged
as a more likeable group than any other creatures. Thereafter,
I was to begin some experiments on them. Quite successful
indeed. My liking for these cats caused me to contemplate
how to widen and strengthen their intelligences. Thereupon,
I set out to modify the Power Generator. Thus began the experiments.
The Generator provided the felines with a more obdurate
life energy, one which was most difficult to suppress -- the
cats die, yet with stubborn energy return once again to life!
The side effect is that strange glow which surrounds them.
After several manipulations I was successful in increasing
their lives up to nine times. Thus no one would be able to
truly defeat them until their ninth life. The source of all
extra life resides in the Power Generator. Dear reader, make
of mine experiments what thou wilt.
This book belongs to Teldrono The Mage
For thee, bright reader, I have been deep in the heart of
darkness in search of the Way. The Way to reverse or even
negate the effects of Bloodspawn hath been my quest. Stoneheart
is also on my mind, thou art right, so right... By the way,
dear reader, if thou shouldst know how to obtain some, contact
me immediately. I thank thee in advance for thy kindness.
Let us begin, for I am losing track of what thou art interested
in. Thou art not afraid of dying, art thou? Well, then I shall
proceed and tell thee what all this truly concerns. The more
I would experiment with it, the closer I would come to success.
That was mine intuition. Well, I must admit it did not work.
Bloodspawn is bound to have some side effects. I do not know
which yet. The heart of the matter, if I may say so dear reader,
is that thou art about to take possession of a secret. Darkness
may fall upon thee at the very same time. I recommend thou
beest extremely careful, a fatal accident is easily triggered
when manipulating those forces.
In the heart of the mountain, I found the red-orange mineral.
I collected samples and, after many a transformation, I turned
it into the Forbidden Reagent. Thou art certain, dearest reader,
that thou fearest death no more? I want to make it clear this
is nothing like what thou hast seen before... Many a mage's
life was taken away. How did I turn it into a powerful magical
reagent, thou askest? Yes, indeed, how? Oh! I remember, thou
hast only to crush it into a fine powder. Then, thou dost
combine the powder with fresh human blood. 'Tis just so!
This powerful reagent, too powerful for my fellow mages
who were fools enough to lose their lives, enables thee to
create some spells. It might make possible the spells to flay
men's minds, or set swords into dancing death, or to decimate
entire cities. Mass death. Well, think of it, thou mayest
be able to make matter disintegrate, and even call lightning
to thy service, if I recall correctly mine experiments. These
are the powers of Bloodspawn.
Dear reader, thou art now ready to experiment, or ready
to lose thy life. Remember how careful thou shouldst be when
carrying it. Finding safe means to avoid the Bloodspawn's
side effects is of primary concern. Herein, I did give thee
all thou wilt ever need to know. Thou mightest want to be
prepared for fits. Experimenting with Bloodspawn and Stoneheart
will trigger numerous disorders. Many a time did I attempt
to delay the onset of the fits, all in vain, alas.
The future doth not seem to be a long shining path. I even
wonder how long I will remain sane. Thou art the reason why
I wrote such a book, dear reader, it is for thee to read and
for thee to take our place once I be gone. This powerful knowledge
painfully extracted from the heart of darkness must outlive
us. Thou shalt continue!
OBSERVATIONS OF PAIN
by MageLord Filbercio
We have always thought of "pain" as the unpleasant reaction
of a being's nervous system to certain environmental stimuli.
But through my recent studies, I believe that I have come
to understand pain as a state of mind, rather than a simple
physical reaction. It is very easy to inflict physical pain
on someone. A casual look about my laboratory will prove that.
Iron maidens, thumbscrews, and racks are all useful for this
purpose, but what should be done for the person who can literally
accept and even ignore physical pain? In this case, a test
of one's mental faculties shall be necessary. Research thy
subject carefully, and discover what tears into his soul.
Understand his psyche, and use what thou dost discover to
help augment the physical torture.
We will look now at a few examples. Suppose thou dost want
to cause a harpsichordist pain. Thumbscrews are the obvious
choice, but why not add to his experience by playing the blissful
tune "Sea Shanty"? This should produce some very good results.
Similarly, if the subject is a writer, strapping him to "the
rack" and reading from the dismal "Sir Trout's Plot Guide"
will have him writhing. Throughout these pages, thou wilt
find even more insidious ways to produce pain. Read them well,
and thou wilt never be disappointed with the results.
POETRY FOR THE ROMANTIC LUTE
by Sir D. Dey
I gave my love a chicken
that had no bone
I gave my love a cherry
that had no stone
I wrote my love a story
that had no end...
Decade 1: This is a new era for me. This newfound land is
marvelous! A great destiny awaits our people and thee, Erstam!
So much to learn from this land, I am overcome with joy. So
much to learn about its fauna and flora, I must start early
in the morning. Tonight sleep is not to be found. I must go
out, explore and meet the creatures of the night.
2nd Year of Third Decade: Last night I decided to explore
the catacombs of the city. I left as fast as I went in. This
is not for a man of mine age. The place was filled with creatures
unknown to me at this point. My mind doth not know how to
describe them. The best description I can conjure is to say
that they were some sort of monster, half-man half-rat.
4th Decade, 1st Year: I am still amazed at the variety and
abundance of wildlife. Thy grip on nature is always fragile
at first, Erstam, remember? As often as not, I would run into
a monster or an unknown species. I vividly remember, dear
reader, the strange cat I encountered tonight. It was eerie.
The cat glowed like a spell. I left in great haste fearing
for my life. Such a cat must have a strange effect upon us.
I wonder what deranged mind created such a danger.
5th Decade, Third Year: Found some ruins not too far from
here. Interesting discovery of a jawbone and large fangs.
A relic from an ancient culture?
7th Decade, 4th Year: Today, I encountered a strange white-haired
creature from the icy lands; it seemed to be a cross between
Man and Beast. Found the clue to how the Ophidians stepped
from place to place without travelling through the space between.
The answer lies in the Void!
2nd Year of the Eighth Decade: That was the most frightening
time so far. Dearest reader, thou wilt not believe me, but
let me assure thee of the veracity of this tale. I was wandering
in the forest at the northeast edge of town, when I heard
this stentorian noise, this growl. I was petrified. Directly
in front of me, a terrifying predator, the beast stood erect
on its feet, towering well over mine height. Its huge claws
and sharp teeth sent a chill down my poor old spine. I still
shiver thinking of it when writing these words. The creature
lunged for my backpack, tore it asunder and devoured all of
the honey jars I had saved for the outing.
6th Year of Eighth Decade: Those jealous mages stole some
secrets and powers from me. They want the Teeth, I am certain
of it! I shall have to take up residence on some isle, where
they cannot find me...
3rd Year of Ninth Decade: I stood all night working on a few
formulas. Dawn already. What a chill bleak morning. Need to
throw more wood in the fire.
4th Year of Ninth Decade: Today, icy blew the winds from beyond
the Frozen Lands. If this lasts I will have to make more dried
meat. Food is low. Need more firewood.
6th Year of Ninth Decade: The day passed rather rapidly, uneventfully.
8th Year of the Ninth Decade: What a beautiful sunrise! I
can almost taste the salt breeze from the sea. How invigorating!
A SHORT TREATISE ON COMBAT TACTICS & HABILIMENTS OF WAR
Trusty and well-beloved adventurer, I greet thee well and
thank thee for reading this short treatise. Herein, combat
tactics will be described for thy benefit in setting forth,
dearest adventurer. Thou wilt learn how to read a book and
how to fight intelligently in our worlds.
Thy safety is important for the worlds are vast enough for
thee to roam freely about. Restless warrior, I know thou hast
oft crisscrossed the land and oft the swamps, so think how
easy a prey an injured man would be for the creatures who
inhabit these realms.
The basic rule of safety in combat and in unknown territories
is not to think of thyself as over-mighty. Thou mayest be
witty and subtle in thy speech, but thou must be even more
alert and aware of thy combat environment. Adapt to thine
opponent, to the weather and to the terrain.
Know thyself, know thine opponent. Thou shalt know thy limits.
Thou shalt identify as quickly as possible what kind of creature
thou art faced with so that thou canst use the most appropriate
For example, know that herbivores will flee quite oft. On
the other hand, carnivorous creatures attack the weakest opponent.
Some creatures will attack at random or toward the weakest
party member. Thou shouldst expect militiamen and guards to
use tactically accurate strategies. The weakest member will
be attacked, flanking will be used, as well as tactical retreats,
and so forth...
Always use logic. Creatures from the Icy Lands will be more
susceptible to fire, for example, and swamp creatures are
immune to poison. When attacking foes, a good strategy is
easily available to thee: thou canst always hide and shoot.
Or thou canst flank and protect thyself quite well. When flanking,
it is best to use some long range type of habiliment. For
example, a crossbow could be given to an ally who is flanking.
Make sure the ally who is flanking does not hurt any of the
other members in thy group. Caution is strongly advised.
Use thine habiliment of war well. A bow always requires
arrows. Ensure thou art not short of ammunition or wielding
a useless weapon. Use thy surroundings to slow thine opponents.
For example, thou mayest lay down caltrops on thine enemy's
path. Most of all, always maintain a good balance between
ranged and non-ranged habiliment of war within thy travelling
Upon leaving a town for thine adventures in the wilderness,
do stop by the various shoppes to purchase a backpack and
fill it with many a variety of foods. Long trips without food
will leave thee weak and more susceptible to wounds from thine
enemies' attacks. Thou shalt not bypass a trainer's hall.
Thou shouldst train hard to become a better warrior. Visit
trainers and learn from them. Those hours spent training with
masters may save thy life.
While it is necessary to use armour wisely, I recommend
to thee to buy armour as soon as possible. In doing so take
into consideration the following qualities: weight, sturdiness,
protection. Armour may be divided into the two types appearing
hereunder: antique and magic. The magic armour type is almost
twice as effective in protecting thee as the antique one.
Antique armour includes leather, metal scales, chain mail
and metal plates. The sturdier the material, the greater the
protection. Leather armour, boots, collar, gloves and helm
offer the least protection. On the other hand, they will be
the lightest. Scale armour and chain armour, chain coif and
chain leggings are a bit better than leather, but not overmuch.
Shields: a buckler or a wooden shield will provide thee
with the least amount of protection in this category. A brass
shield or a curved heater will provide thee with the most
protection. By protection, thou shouldst understand that thine
attacker will be deflected away from thee. Amongst helms,
thy choice is great and the best protection comes from the
magic helm. The great helm is nearly as efficient, though.
The crested helm and the caddelite helm do offer the same
amount of safety.
Chain armour, chain coif, and chain leggings will decrease
very little the impact of enemy blows. Thou wilt need a gorget
and some greaves for those exposed vital areas. A kidney belt
could be useful but, I must needs warn thee, of little protection.
Plate armour offers solid protection for thy money. I would
recommend a pair of plate leggings as well. The ultimate protection,
in matters of armour, at this point in time, is as follows:
a magic helm, a magic shield, a magic gorget, a pair of magic
leggings and some magic gauntlets.
Dearest fighter, for thine ease I will divide weapons into
groups. Thus, at one glance, thou mayest easily remember their
efficiency. I will begin with the least damaging weapons:
Blowguns, boomerangs, daggers, slings, pitchforks, picks and
whips have very little effect. A magic axe, a mace, a morning
star, a two-handed axe, a spear, a shovel or a sword are of
limited effect upon thine opponent. A scythe, a bow, a fire
sword, a musket, or a two handed hammer are slightly more
Crossbows (my favorite), halberds, lightning whips, magic
bows, fire wands and fire bolts are very powerful weapons.
Find the best weapon and armour thou canst obtain. Remember
all weapons ought to be kept ready for immediate use. One
more word of wisdom: Do not neglect thy sleeping time. Sleeping
frequently will give thee the rest fighters need. An eight
hour sleep will restore full strength for thee and thine allies.
If thou hast weak allies, thou shouldst know the most suitable
and productive method of combat is to prompt them to attack
the weakest enemy or encourage them to flee. In order to protect
a weak ally, thou shouldst bestow the protection halo on them.
In addition to that, thou mayest put the strongest member
in thy group in charge of protecting the weakest.
When attacking foes, a good strategy is easily available
to thee: thou canst always hide and shoot. Or thou canst flank
and protect thyself quite well. When flanking, it is best
to use long range type of habiliments, for example, a crossbow.
Be sure the member of thy group who is flanking doth not hurt
any of thine other allies. Caution is strongly advised.
Thy band members armed with heavy weapons should be swift
to attack the strongest opponent. Other members should follow
thy guidance and attack the weakest enemies. When reading
a book, look for useful information and memorize it or jot
it down, for thou mayest have need of it later. Read quickly,
but read all pages. I cannot emphasize enough the importance
of reading all of the pages of a book.
Dearest adventurer, I beseech thee to thoroughly consider
the aforesaid cautions and advice. The reason that I wrote
such a treatise is to sharpen thy fighting skills, but thou
canst tell that is not a goal in itself. My goal in using
my quill is truly to convince thee with all mine heart and
all mine expertise to hasten home safely once thy quest hath
been completed and thy thirst for adventuring quenched.
THE SLEEPING SOLDIER
Alinda of Monitor
Batlin the Sage
Peter of Monitor
A TREATISE ON TORTURE
by Evad, Royal Servant to the King of the White Dragon
I have been given the privilege of chronicling the King's
romp through madness. As a reward, I will be slain quickly.
His Majesty began with a commoner named Patric, stretching
him on the rack. By his own hands, His Majesty turned the
man to a babbling wretch over the course of twelve hours.
...After boiling the flesh from a family of farmers, His
Majesty became inspired. He restrained a noble, a guest at
the great banquet, upon the torture table and applied tourniquets
to each of his limbs. One by one the limbs became useless
strands of dead flesh. He showed mercy on the victim by killing
him only five hours later by opening numerous small wounds
on his person and letting him bleed to death.
The King of the White Dragon killed his own wife by slaying
a bull, slitting open the carcass, and placing her, tied securely,
into the opening. He then sewed the opening shut such that
naught but her head protruded. He sat outside and watched
as the carcass decayed around her and vultures and other carrion
beasts picked apart the meat -- the bull's and hers...
PRINCIPLES OF ECONOMICS
Economics is, simply put, the study of how an entity could
most efficiently allocate its limited resources. I use the
word "Entity" because these principles, moderately adjusted,
may be applied on different levels. From the largest, and
consequently least detailed, level -- that of a worldwide
market in which the intricacies of trade and specialization
are most emphasized, to an individual business's or, smaller
still, an individual's struggle to gain maximum utility from
the limited funds provided by that person's livelihood.
Let us begin by defining some simple, underlying theories
which may dictate the behavior of our target, which, for the
purposes of this book, will focus on the economy as a whole.
I intend later to publish a separate document on the wholly
different level of business and/or individual-level economic
fundamentals. As is the case in any science, one must first
be given a foundation upon which to build his knowledge; in
this particular instance, I will refer to the "Tower of Economic
The market is the basis of my study. A market is not a tangible
thing -- not like the marketplace at which one might trade
with merchants for needs or wants (these I will define further
into the book), although a marketplace is a part of the market.
Rather, the market consists of the consumer (the entity purchasing
the resource) and the seller (the entity offering the resource
for sale or trade). For example, at the aforementioned marketplace,
the baker, offering a loaf of bread, would be the seller,
and an entity interested in purchasing the loaf would be the
A market exists when there is a resource to be exchanged.
A resource, in simplest terms, can be either a good or a service.
A good is a tangible item -- examples include water, diamonds,
and false beards. A service is something which is performed
by an entity; e.g. the service a cargo ship supplies or even
governmental bodies such as a standing garrison of soldiers...
THE DWELLERS OF SERPENT ISLE
One quarter of a millennium ago, the man-daemon Lord British
impressed upon the citizens of Sosaria his Eight Virtues.
Most of the citizens were deluded into believing that his
way of life was just and fair. Some were strong enough to
oppose his rule and fled to begin their own civilization,
free of the oppressive autocracy. These brave folk, led by
a mage whose bravery is now sadly forgotten, ventured out
to sea, with little idea as to their destination; only a firm
belief that Lord British was a tyrant whose rule was not to
Erstam led them to a large island, which was instantly christened
"New Sosaria." The land's name was changed shortly thereafter
to "Serpent Isle," after the strange ruins found there. There
were three principal groups who left Sosaria -- the Mages
of Moon, the chivalrous folk of the Two Montors, and the folk
of the port city of Fawn. Each had their own reasons for joining
in the emigration: the mages because they felt that certain
of Lord British's virtues were unrealistic; the Fawnese because
Lord British had failed to acknowledge a ninth virtue -- Beauty;
and the brave folk of Monitor because of their belief that
Courage ranked above all else...
By Andrew of Monitor
Chapter One: The tale of Kosric and Pedigar
The brothers Kosric and Pedigar sailed with the original expedition
to Serpent Isle, when the land was more unknown and mysterious
than it is today. Each brother was the Lord of one of the
two Montors on Sosaria, and, not content to settle for Lord
British's uncompromising and misguided rule, convinced their
people to set sail with the mages of Moon and the people of
Fawn to the new land.
Lost in the history books of the other two cities, however,
is the tale of what happened when the tired sojourners first
set foot on this new land. The leader, a mage who went by
the name Erstam (it surely could not be the same mad Erstam
who performs intolerable experiments today), was given the
honor of stepping first on Serpent Isle. It was then up to
the leaders of the individual groups to decide who would next
trod upon the unknown isle.
Kosric and Pedigar claimed the right, as their group were
the finest warriors among them. The Fawnese claimed it also,
arguing that their beauty should mingle with the beauty of
the new island before anyone else. The Moonshadian mages,
being untrustworthy, teleported themselves onto the island
while the other two groups were engaged in discussion, stealing
the honor. The greatest honor gone, the Fawnese and Monitorians
descended the gangplank together. The Moonshadians scattered
themselves like the four winds before they could be reprimanded,
and the Fawnese ran to explore the beauty of the island.
At that moment, emerging from the hills and woodlands, trolls
began an assault on the intrepid band. Were it not for Kosric
and Pedigar and their Monitorian soldiers, the expedition
would have failed then and there, for the Fawnese and Moonshadians
were caught unawares. However, the two launched themselves
at the foes, Kosric wielding his hammer, "Thunderbolt," and
Pedigar with his greatsword, and brought doom upon the foul
When the battle was over, a score of courageous Monitorians
lay dead beside the bodies of twice that number of trolls.
Let it not be forgotten, brave Monitorian, that it was thine
ancestors who led the way for all civilized life on this island.
2 apples, peeled and sliced
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons of corn starch
2 tablespoons of butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 double pie crust
Place the apples, sugar, cornstarch, and cinnamon into a
large bowl and combine them. Put the mixture into the bottom
pie crust with the butter. Put on top pie crust and cut slits
for steam to escape. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 45
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup warm water
5 ounces of yeast
4 cups unsifted flour
Scald milk, stir in sugar, salt, and butter. Cool to lukewarm.
Measure warm water into a large warm bowl. Add yeast and stir
until dissolved. Stir in lukewarm milk mixture, egg, and half
of the flour, and beat until smooth. Stir in remaining flour
to make a stiff batter. Cover the bowl tightly with waxed
paper. Refrigerate the dough at least two hours. Divide dough
into two halves and roll each piece into a 9 by 14 inch rectangle.
Brush lightly with melted butter. Filling: Sprinkle the rectangle
with a mixture of 3/4 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and
1/3 cup raisins and pecans. Roll the rectangles so that they
are 9 inches long (like a jelly roll). Make sure the edges
are firmly sealed.
Cut each roll into nine equal pieces and place them in a
greased pan (leave enough room for the pieces to expand).
Cover the pan and let the dough rise in a warm place until
the rolls have doubled in size. Bake at a moderate temperature
(350 F degrees) for about 30 minutes. Frosting: Frost with
a mixture of confectioner's sugar (1 1/2 cup) and 5 teaspoons
Chicken and Rice:
2 cups rice
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped green pepper
3/4 cup thinly sliced onions
3 tablespoons salad oil
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 cups chicken stock
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 cups slivered cooked chicken
3 ripe tomatoes, cut in thin wedges
Cook green pepper and onions in oil till tender. Blend cornstarch
and a little chicken stock. Add remaining stock and soy sauce.
Gently stir chicken and stock into vegetables. Cook and stir
until sauce is clear and thickened. Add tomatoes and cook
just until heated. Serve over rice. Serves six.
1/2 stick butter
1 cup of rice, cooked
1 cup chopped onions
1 bunch broccoli, chopped
6 ounces of cream of mushroom soup
4 ounces of melted cheese
Melt butter in skillet; add chopped onion and saute until
clear. Add the chopped broccoli. Stir thoroughly. Add the
cream of mushroom soup. Stir and simmer a few minutes. Add
1 cup cooked rice; stir and simmer. If too thick, add a small
amount of water and cook 25 to 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
Apple Nut Squares:
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 cup cooking oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 cups peeled, diced apples
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Heat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a 9 by 13 inch
pan. In large mixing bowl, combine first 8 ingredients; beat
rapidly for 3 minutes (about 150 strokes). Stir in apples
and pecans. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 50 to 60 minutes
until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Serve
with whipped topping, ice cream, or as is, dusted with powdered
sugar. Serves 12 to 15.
3 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
1 cup sifted flour
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon soft butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
dash of salt
2/3 cup broken almonds, or other nuts
Blend cream cheese and butter. Stir in flour. Chill 1 hour.
Shape in 2 dozen 1" balls. Form dough on bottom and sides
of cups or muffin tins. Beat remaining ingredients together
except nuts. Divide half of the nuts among the cups. Add egg
mixture to top with remaining nuts. Bake at 325 degrees for
1 lb. franks
2 tablespoons butter
10 3/4 oz. tomato soup
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
Score franks in corkscrew fashion. In skillet, brown franks
lightly in butter. Add remaining ingredients except green
pepper. Simmer covered 10 minutes. Add green pepper and cook
5 minutes longer.
Peanut Butter Fudge:
2 cups sugar
dash of salt
2/3 cup milk
1 tablespoon light syrup
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
Mix first 4 ingredients and cook until soft ball stage.
Add remaining ingredients and blend. Pour quickly into greased
pan and cut into squares.
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon soft butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1 cup flour
Combine egg, butter, salt, milk, and vinegar. Add enough
flour to make a stiff dough. Roll out very thin on floured
surface. Let dough stand about 2 hours, until dried. Cut into
strips. Drop noodles in salted water or broth. Cook for 10
minutes. Makes 3 cups of uncooked noodles.
Pan Fried Whole Trout:
Trout, 2 to 3 lbs. cleaned
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground pepper
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
3 tbsp. butter
8 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 lemon, cut into wedges
Wash trout under cold water; pat dry with a towel. Sprinkle
with salt and pepper. Mix cornmeal and flour. In heavy skillet,
melt butter in oil over moderate heat. When the foam begins
to subside, roll trout in cornmeal/flour mixture, shake off
excess and put in skillet. Fry 4-5 minutes on each side, until
golden brown and flaky. Serve with lemon wedges.
FIGHTING IS AN ART
Lesson One: In fighting, thou must never lose, no matter
what thou must do. Anyone fighting thee is an enemy. An enemy
must be destroyed. During battle thou wilt be confronted by
thine enemy. Thou must defeat him, or thou wilt bring disgrace
upon thyself, thy clan, and thy trainer. Battles are always
on the horizon. Thou must train hard, and work thyself hard.
Thou must think battle, eat battle, sleep battle if thou dost
expect to be victorious. Those warriors who do not think they
can do this should contemplate another line of work.
Knowing thy weapon is the greatest value. Be it sword, mace,
or bow, thou must train with it until mastery if thou dost
want to be a true warrior. If thou hast not the time or the
mind to train in this fashion then thou shouldst perhaps train
with the shovel and the carrying of animal wastes from the
fields instead. It is better for thee to serve thy clan as
best as thou canst, though it be a less than knight-worthy
post, than for thee to run in battle and endanger thy comrades.
Anyone caught running away from a battle should be put to
the sword immediately, lest others feel that they may let
their womanish fears prevail. The true knight is not he who
fights battles, but he who relishes in the spilling of blood.
He who is enthralled with the smell of a bowel split wide,
or the sight of anothers' blood staining his sword and armour,
should be praised above all. This is what a true knight seeks.
He is a true master in the arts of fighting.
LORD BRITISH'S TYRANNICAL ADVENTURE
Lord British was a monarch who was haughty and vain
And especially proud of his despotic reign.
But conceit of this sort isn't proper at all
And soon the old tyrant was doomed for a fall.
One day as he viewed his subjects from on high,
A voluptuous young wench caught his tired old eye.
Bending over to see, that oversexed goat
Let his gold crown slip and fall into the moat.
With a cry of sheer terror he jumped like a fool,
he rushed to his ditch (it reeked like a cesspool).
He leaped in kersplash! and sank like a stone.
(Everyone hoped for a new heir to the throne.)
But alas he came up and staggered from the sewer,
his robes smelled of offal, his breath like manure.
"Why did I do that? What possessed me today?
I'm as daft as old Iolo, and now I smell like Dupre."
"And if anyone sees me, oh what a disgrace,
I had better leave if I want to save face!"
But a crowd had assembled and stared, amazed,
the sight confused them, the stench left them dazed.
Then with a shriek a young boy began to laugh,
giggling and pointing at the king's fecal bath.
Becoming enraged, the monarch suddenly turned wild,
He looked like he wanted to strangle the child!
His hand turned to fist, he struck lightning fast,
but the old poop missed, and fell on his ass.
Not holding back, the crowd soon roared,
The laughter was deafening. It grew till it soared.
But the king found no humor and called for his men.
The arrival of the guard quickly silenced the din.
"For all of you who found humor in my sorrow and misfortune
Will soon find the rack! And pain! And contortion!
Then I will cackle as you stew and boil,
in a pot full of lard and bubbling oil.
And for those who survive this (they'd liefer be dead),
I'll pluck out their eyes, and chop off their head!
Finally in the wind their bodies will swing,
Then you fools will be sorry for laughing at this king!"
Then all were led away at the point of a sword,
While old Lord Brit took a dip in a ford.
Then he laughed at the cries that screamed through the night,
He chuckled at their anguish, he cackled at their plight.
In Britannia today no one openly tells this tale,
lest they find themselves thrown in tyrant's darkest jail.
But here in our new homeland this song can be sung,
the tale of how British acquired his faint smell of dung.
THE CRYING LUTE
The lute in mine hands as I softly strum,
cries for it knows the hollow man I have become,
of my tragedy, of my sorrow, of my lonely despair.
Only my lute listens, alone, only it cares.
Though I am a knight, and mine emotions I hide,
I still feel the soul-eating darkness inside.
I am a man of armour and a man of the sword,
but the blackness I feel I cannot ward.
The green swine came, silent coward attacks,
with bow and arrow, with sword and axe.
They came for our blood, for our flesh to eat,
We hacked them to death, our blades flaying their meat.
Though I have loved her, she still left this life,
her pale white skin pierced by a goblin's bloody knife.
But I am left here, an empty shell of a man.
I cannot speak, the sorrow is more than I can stand.
Others drink themselves blind, but I cannot partake
The others celebrate, but smiles I can't fake.
I will sit here by the fire and softly strum,
only my lute knows the hollow man I have finally become.
THE HOUSE OF THE UNICORN
Come! Enter into the rich house of the Unicorn.
Open your ears and minds,
Absorb the magic of the steed's fair horn!
We are not now, nor never have we been
Children of the Unicorn.
But if we give in to ourselves,
and listen to music of the elves
one day soon we will be with the Unicorn.
On the day of thy birth
came forth a new ray of sun to our earth
Providing warmth and green riches
to drive away the sorcery of witches.
And we all take part in the gifts of the harvest moon,
and give ourselves to the lute and the tune
and drink the wealth of the early morning dew
and savor the pleasure held by the precious chosen few.
Oh, to belong to the chosen of the Unicorn,
The wealth of spirit, no fear of the forlorn.
We can dance in the meadows by the whispering wonders,
and ride forth on lightning and command the thunder.
Oh, great steed, thou magical beast,
in thine honor we break bread and feast.
We raise our cups high in twilight's last never
We are in the House of the Unicorn where we will dwell forever.
NO SUCH THING AS FAIRIES
In our childhood years we learn that fairies glow,
and this is good as everyone knows.
But we partake the juice of the dark berries
though we know there are no such thing as fairies...
We cry, though we rarely let it show,
our tears fall like melting mountain snow.
But still the fairies float like smoke rings though the night.
stealing us blind with their mythical magical sight.
And with the fortune to seize priceless treasures,
and the subsequent Moonshadian pleasures
and as we grow older and bolder and drawn,
the fairies visit us less till, alas, they are gone.
But for our offspring the fairies will still glow,
and this is good as every child knows.
But we keep partaking in the juice of the dark berries
for we know that there are no such things as fairies...
GUIDE TO KNIGHTHOOD
By Graeme of Monitor
Courage is in thine heart; if thine heart is not in danger
of being pierced by a blade, then thou canst not fight with
courage. Courageous men choose as weapons the sword, hammer,
mace, and axe. Be wary of those who wield these weapons well,
for they are fierce foes. Be also wary of those who weave
spells, for they have no courage, and the cowardly weave webs
of deceit, lies, and trickery. Courage manifests itself on
a battlefield, and the side whose courage is greatest, regardless
of numbers, shall emerge victorious. A courageous man knows
that one can leave the battlefield only two ways: By eliminating
all of the enemies or in death. A man whose life thou hast
saved, or who hath saved thine, can be trusted the rest of
A knight must never work toward personal goals in lieu of
the goals of his Lord. Courage is not only taking sword up
against his foe; it is the courage to admit to and remedy
his own shortcomings, and if it happens that the knight is
wrong, he must have the courage to admit as much. A knight
must know, beyond the martial skills of the weapon of his
fancy, the art of tactics, as it may some day come to him
that the lives of his fellow knights may be decided by his
Any knight who betrays another will never be allowed to
take up arms again. A knight who perpetrates such a wrongdoing
is no knight; he is like unto the goblins he once warred against.
Courage is separate from stupidity; there comes a time to
run and regroup in some battles, but only those which are
WARRIORS OF FORTUNE QUARTERLY
The Adventurer's Guidebook
For you men who are stern of heart and gifted in the ways
of weapons of steel, fortunes more mightier than you can dream
of lie in your near future. All you must do is read the secrets
held within these pages and you will be on the way to riches.
Enter into mysteries that have baffled men through the ages,
with rewards greater than those of today's kingdoms. Come,
adventure and gold are on your horizon.
This issue offers the stern-hearted adventurer a chance
to be the first to a miser's treasure! With more gold than
ten ships can carry! Read on, and learn the history and the
location of one of the world's richest lost lairs. Couldst
thou be the first to find it?
Many hundreds of years ago there was a miser named Triphako
who had accumulated a massive fortune by swindling the local
natives and by hiring pirates to attack his competitor's ships
and cargo. One night after he had a vivid dream about losing
his vast wealth, Triphako consulted a great wizard. The sage
forewarned that the miser was about to lose all of his wealth
in the near future and that nothing that he could do would
prevent this. Thinking that he could avoid the prophecy, the
miser took all of his gold to a cave in the northern icy reaches
for safe storage. He hired the wizard to create a series of
tunnels in the rear of the cave that no one could find their
way through without a magical map.
When all was finished, the wizard conjured an Ice Dragon
to guard the mouth of the cave that led to the riches. On
the voyage back to the palace, the miser, fearing that the
wizard would allow his secret to be known, killed the wizard
by pushing him into the sea. Unfortunately for him, upon the
wizard's death, the magical map disappeared in a puff of blue
smoke. Fearing that the prophecy had come true, the miser
returned to the cave and tried to find the route to his riches.
True to the wizard's warning, the miser never did reach his
riches. Most say that he lies somewhere within the frozen
caverns, for he never returned.
To this day no one hath survived the tunnels and reached
the lair of the Ice Dragon. Some have attempted to face the
Ice Dragons at the mouth of their cave, but all have either
fled, or become permanent fixtures in the ice surrounding
the cavern's mouth. If thou beest brave, and sure of thy skills
in battle, thou mayest find the secret way into the lair of
Triphako and to his riches untold.
THE RITES OF CREMATION
Let this book serve as a guide to those who follow me in
the honorable profession of cremator to the finest warriors
in all the lands known to mankind, the fine fighters of Monitor!
Most of this will become known during thine apprenticeship,
but these written words will serve to bolster that which thy
predecessor will be teaching thee.
The most important thing thou canst learn of thy profession
is this: being a cremator is no less honorable or worthy a
duty than taking up sword and shield and doing battle with
goblins, trolls, and all the other uncivilized fiends that
populate our land. I put to any doubters this question: where
would a warrior be if he knew that, should he die valiantly
in battle, his body would not be brought back to receive a
proper cremation? That his body, primed and trained for war
in life, should feed the carrion cowards who would rather
flee than fight, or perhaps a meal for the wives of those
foul beings who struck him down? He would be in the rear of
the force, hoping that he returns home; worried more for his
life than guiding his blade through the hearts of his enemies.
I have shown thee the worth of thy profession; now I will
reveal to thee the import of burning one's body, as opposed
to the primitive practice of burial. Thou hast known from
the day thy first words were spoken that there is mystical
power in the ashes of the dead. 'Tis true, and thou dost know
this from thy Test of Knighthood. Ashes are the soul of a
man; his spirit is locked within the remains of his lifeless
body, and burning it releases the spirit from its imprisonment.
If this is not done, the spirit will go insane and rise up
as a monster -- lifeless, yet hateful and vengeful and animated.
The spirit is in torment. This is no way for a courageous
knight to spend eternity. For such a reason, the cremator
is a respected and honored member of our stout city.
The question arises that, after the body is cremated (the
method is described in detail in a later chapter), where must
the ashes be stored? Fortune and wisdom on the part of our
forefathers have placed us in a land whereby an opening in
the great mountains to the west can serve as catacombs; a
tomb for the courageous dead. It seems that these were once
daemon lands, as evidenced by the ruins in the northwest,
but more definitively by the catacombs. Therein, coffins and
dusty tapestries hold their unburned dead. No doubt the place
is naught but ruins because the maddened corpses did rise
up and wreak their vengeance on the fools...
TEMPLES OF CHAOS
Translated by Miggim
Xenka's prophecies mention the ancient Ophidian temples
of Chaos as somehow being important to the Hero From Another
World. Though I have not been able to decipher the true meaning
of Xenka's visions regarding these temples, I feel that the
Hero From Another World shall surely need some information
regarding their location. I have translated a brief description
of the Chaos temples from Ophidian script into Runic.
The Temple of Emotion was carved from the living rock of
Skullcrusher. To find the Temple of Emotion thou shouldst
look for a small lake. The temple's entrance is a small distance
south of this lake. The Temple of Enthusiasm lies along the
coast, north of the great Spinebreaker mountains. The Temple
of Tolerance was built near the coast at the northern end
of the snowy valley between the Spinebreaker and Skullcrusher
GREAT PRACTICAL JOKES
Chapter One: Exploding Books
Heh, heh, heh...
The Ethical Man obtains his strength through Ethics. Hence,
he is stronger as well as more daring. The Ethical Man would
risk his life to save another man's life. On the topic of
Wealth and Ethics: To be truly ethical, thou shouldst reject
Wealth. Wealth corrupts the soul. It doth do so by placing
a greater value upon goods and material possessions rather
than upon the "anima", that is the living matter or spiritual
matter. Spiritual kinship should be established as early as
possible instead of the numerous tentative efforts by parents
and the various communities to establish a Wealth kinship.
Believing thou shouldst abide by rules of conduct, learning
well and being of good rule and disposition are what will
make an ethical Man of thee. Wealth turns too many men away
from rules of conduct. Quickly enough, young men like thee
become wastrels and haunters of alehouses, thereby losing
their temporary possession, Wealth, but above all losing their
richest dowry, their only true wealth, their soul. Ethics
will prevent thee from following that path. Reject Wealth,
my dear reader and most assured brother, and be truly ethical.
I hope I have convinced thee, for if so, I have saved thee.
Never, NEVER, surrender to thine enemies. Fight to the death,
but do not abandon thine Ethics. The serpent of gold can send
thee along the path to knowledge, but only if balanced by
wisdom. Thou mayest already have felt the ill fortune brought
about by wealth without wisdom; now use thy newfound wisdom
to balance the power of gold.
THE CHAOS GATE
Let this be a final warning: Those who enter this room lacking
in discipline will forfeit their lives. Those who know not
the password, Despair! The brass gate bars thy way, would-be
intruder, and only those privy to the secret password know
when to use the runes! Crawl back to your cities of structured
folly and temples of Order, dog! As I lie here, slowly dying
of starvation, I laugh at thy fate, for though our city hath
fallen, fool, thou wilt not use my gate as a means of ingress!
Here in our city, your fellow dogs revel in their victory,
knowing not that I have sealed them within! There, look! A
general shakes his fist at me through the brass gate, sealed
within! Nay, Order dogs, thou wilt not use my gate to send
your metal slayers toward my fellows! Thou wilt have to use
the serpent gates to conquer the southern lands! I can die
in peace, knowing that, though mine home lies in ruin and
the Chaos that is our city is now under the control of the
enemy, my gate will stand closed for all eternity!
PRINCIPLES OF BALANCE
I write this in great haste, for I can already hear the
forces of Order breaching the keep walls. I know not how this
missive will survive to reach the outside lands, or for that
matter, future generations. Mine only hope is that this speedily-drafted
work will offer record of our hallowed philosophy. For our
culture to have any chance of enduring the ages, someone,
somewhere must find this. Please, reader, I beseech thee,
spread the word of our peoples.
Balance -- The harmony between the Principles of Order and
Chaos -- is the one pure axiom we hold true. All three Principles
are symbolized in our hieroglyphs: The Great Earth Serpent,
keeper of Balance, lies on a vertical plane, around which
the two opposing serpents of Chaos and Order wrap themselves.
Chaos and Order each embrace three Forces. These six Forces,
when combined, form the three Principles of Balance. The Forces
of Chaos are Tolerance, Enthusiasm, and Emotion; the Forces
of Order are Ethicality, Discipline, and Logic.
CHAOS -- Tolerance is that which encourages the acceptance
of all things. Enthusiasm is the energy that allows one to
perform great tasks. Emotion is the ability to perceive those
feelings that come from the heart, as opposed to coming from
ORDER -- Ethicality is the belief that there is great value
in abiding by rules of conduct. Discipline is the drive to
complete a task and avoid the distractions that will prevent
its completion. Logic permits clear, reasoned thought, free
from any instinctual biases.
BALANCE -- From the marriage between two Forces, one each
from Chaos and Order, come the Principles. Tolerance and Ethicality
combine to form Harmony, the ability to be at peace with the
self, the individual, and the world. From the union of Enthusiasm
and Discipline springs Dedication, that which permits one
to surmount obstacles and lead others. Finally, Emotion tempered
by Logic results in Rationality, the ability to comprehend
life and understand the world around us.
The Forces of Chaos and Order must ever remain in Balance,
for imbalance leads to disaster. Witness the war-torn state
of our world today! As thou canst surely see, my world hath
been torn asunder by disregard for Balance -- our dearest
axiom! If thou dost thrive in a time less violent, I can do
no more than plead with thee to help restore Balance to the
Serpent Isle! I must end this brief explication here, for
I can hear mine attackers pounding upon the oaken door downstairs.
I wish thee and thy world better fortune than mine own.
-- Ssithnos, the Great Hierophant
REPORT ON THE CLEANSING OF THE FIEND'S DOMAIN
Subcommander Stherask, I regret to inform thee that, of
the entire company of brass automatons, not one has returned.
This mission has not only proven costly in terms of the efforts
expended by our wizards to create these automatons, but in
the lives of brave soldiers as well. Of the three humans we
had sent on the mission, Lieutenant Alspeth and her two sergeants,
Shesparios and Iskil, none have returned. We can only fear
the worst in this case; the mission has failed. Were it not
for the unfaltering faith I have in thee and our Commander,
I would question the value of our attempt, as the Fiend has
ceased to meddle in the affairs of Serpent's Fang.
I assure thee, Subcommander, that none blame thee for the
deaths of those three fine warriors. All who know of the failed
mission have no doubts that this was a just cause for loss
RITUAL OF REUNIFICATION
First -- Open the window into the Void by placing the Blackrock
Serpent in its proper slot.
Second -- Each imprisoned Bane must be placed upon the altar
corresponding to its Principle. Unrestrained Emotion leads
to Madness. Unchecked Enthusiasm leads to Wantonness. Unthinking
Tolerance produces Anarchy. The Flame of Chaos shall welcome
each Bane to its proper place.
Third -- That which shall bond the Banes together must be
placed upon the remaining altar. If all is done correctly,
Chaos shall be reunited.
As a follower of Order thou must always conform to the principles
of conduct as accepted by our alliance. Without these as guides
we as a people would be lost. We would be no better than those
who are controlled by Chaos. We are far better than those
who permit anarchy to control their lives and their thoughts.
We must be eternally vigilant to insure that our system of
ethics stands strong, that it must not be corrupted from within.
We must insure that we remain pure, for corruption is the
strength of our enemy, though it will be his own undoing should
we stand aligned against it.
Student of Ethicality, take heed! Thou must be stronger
than thou art in order to stand against the false truths that
Chaos will tempt thee with. As iron is in a forge, thou wilt
be blasted with the torrent of Chaos and corruption 'til thou
wilt lose thy brittleness and harden into a core of strength.
Through Ethics, thou canst become free of the anarchy and
pain that lies within Chaos and ignorance.
LIBRARY OF THE ORDER HIEROPHANT
The Great Library of the Hierophant contains all the history
and knowledge that defines and guides the followers of Order.
Though it is hidden away within the bowels of the mountain,
a student of Order may enter it through the portal in the
Temple of the Hierophant.
In times of disaster and of war, the Great Library was sealed
to prevent its valuable works from being destroyed, or from
falling into the hands of Chaos. Entry into the Library meant
first opening the door to the Temple of the Hierophant. This
could only be achieved by a student placing the correct symbols
of Order on the pedestal before the door to the temple. Since
only true followers of Order would have the understanding
of the symbols, this was the first test to prevent those of
Chaos from desecrating both Temple and Library. Only those
who have studied the writers and poets of Order will have
the wisdom and knowledge to open the door.
Once the door opens the student doth need the Sceptre of
the Hierophant to gain entry into the Library. Since the Hierophant
keeps it in his charge, only by asking his permission can
one gain access. Should the Sceptre be lost, or the Hierophant
killed in battle, the Library will remain forever closed,
away from the corruptions of Chaos.
With Sceptre in hand, the student must stand in front of
the blue pedestal of the temple. He must place the Sceptre
atop the pedestal. The student will then gain instant access
to the Library. All knowledge of Order is held there as a
bastion against corruption and Chaos.
WHAT IS ORDER?
a poem by Sschittek the Wise
What is Order?
Is it a rule?
Is it a law?
Is it a whip with barbs to control the unruly?
It is not any of these, it is more...
It is wisdom, it is knowledge,
It is a sense of duty!
Ethicality is a Scroll,
speaking of principles,
of wisdom and of freedom
from fear and hate.
It is a gleam of sunrise
guiding thee toward enlightenment
and to thy true fate.
Discipline is strength of the mind,
born of willpower and knowledge,
cleansing like a noon summer shower.
It is a well-honed Serpent Dagger,
a blade that cuts through
Chaos and corruption's foul power.
Logic is a straight path,
without obstacles or brambles,
free from both rock and tooth.
Logic is precise and unswerving,
counting Order's truth on an
eternal Abacus of Truth.
SYMBOLS OF THE SERPENT
To commune with the Serpent one must be in possession of
the Earrings of the Serpent. Only via these can the Great
Serpent channel his words to thee. To be at one with Balance
one must have the blackrock Serpents of Order, Chaos, and
of Balance. To enter into the Grand Shrine of Balance one
must wear the Armour of the Serpent, carry the great Staff
of the Serpent, and wear the Crown of the Serpent upon one's
head. Only after these are obtained may one enter the most
sacred of sanctums of the people of the Ophidian order.
I have blocked the entrance to the Catacombs beneath our
outpost with walls of force. None may pass ere this key is
used. If thy need is great, and thou dost follow in the steps
of Order, thou shalt know what to do to retrieve Loriel's
Gift. - Ardiniss
Notes: I have looked for a way through to the other chambers
of this cursed outpost, but have yet found nothing. I did
discover that the well in the southernmost chamber was empty.
By using rope I lowered myself down into the darkness. At
the last chamber I could go no further -- a wall of some kind
of eldritch force blocked my way. I discerned that no ordinary
key would grant me passage. I will search for this key.
To the adventurer actively looking for me treasure: Yes,
thou be looking for me gold, I ken that much. Beware! All
is not as easy as it seems. All is not as it appears. Thou
may not see what is there and what thou do not see can harm
ye. Nevertheless, what thou do not see may save thy life.
Thy rewards will make ye rich. In order to go there, thou
hast to find the entrance. Obvious, yes? Yes, but the entrance
is not to be found easily, for it is a hidden one. Good luck
to ye! - Silverpate.
To Gustacio, wisest of Mages -- The Mundane outsider, the
Avatar, carried a very rare and powerful weapon. The blade
gained its considerable power from a Daemon bound within the
blade by a most puissant enchantment. I would very much like
to study the Mundane's blade. Unfortunately, they released
the Daemon from the sword in order to escape from the Mountains
of Freedom. I wonder... how doth a mere Mundane obtain such
a weapon? Now the blade needs to have its sorcerous energies
realigned if it is to ever contain another bound spirit. I
could repair it if I coud use thy flux analyzer. I know that
the device was stolen from thee years ago. Hast thou ever
recovered it? -- Melino
HORN OF THE GWANI
I See the Hero From Another Land in the frozen lands of
the North. The Hero seeks the wife of their oldest companion.
A wall of ice doth prevent the Hero from reaching the woman.
The Hero lifts a horn -- the Horn of the Gwani -- to their
lips and blows. The sound of the horn is deafening! The wall
of ice is shattered!
RUGGS' LOVE LETTER
The enchanted afternoon when I first saw thy precious face,
thou wert in the full bloom of thy beauty and I was blinded.
I forgot everything, everyone. I forgot all about Batlin standing
next to me and the reagents we were supposed to purchase.
That day I fell in love with thee, my Delphynia. But I fear
thou wert blinded by my physical appearance as well. Alas!
The scars that twist my face are not a pretty sight. Look
beyond mine appearance, Delphynia. Let thy mind's eye see
my soul. Thy mind is less deceitful than thine eyes which
only glance at the surface of things and people. If thou wilt
but look, thou wouldst see the hidden treasures of thy scarred
Ruggs. For I am a good man. My heart is pure and so is my
mind, Delphynia. I beg of thee, look at me. 'Til I see thee
Most esteemed Ruggs,
I cannot forget the day I first beheld thy face, for it is
never far from my mind. As thou art never far from mine heart.
I will admit that to thee, though it may shame me. I cannot
promise when, or if, we can ever be together, dear Ruggs.
For thou art in exile, and I am the only healer in Fawn. I
cannot dwell outside of the gates with thee, no matter how
much mine heart may wish it. But someday, if the heavens smile
upon us, I shall be able to cast aside my doubts and come
to thee as thy love. Until then, I remain ever thine. -- Delphynia
Oh, Great Captains, my Great Captains! So powerful you were
yesterday, so pitiful you are today. Rulers of the City are
now prisoners of the Oracle. What a fate you might have met!
Iolo is pleased that such powerful creatures as you, Great
Captains, have lost power, herein uncovering the fools in
Everyone is in search of The Lady of Fawn. For The Lady
hath been lost since dawn. Barking their strange tune throughout
the city, All of them, townsfolk and priests. Iolo did it,
enjoying such feasts. Avatar, is it not pretty? -- Iolo
Right adventurous Avatar,
I greet thee well, Avatar, sending thee my blessings and letting
thee know that it appears that thou art not paying due attention
to my clues. I require thee that thou dost so. Faithfully
I must seek out Voldin. He will know what can be done against
the power that this "Mad" Iolo doth exhibit. I still can hardly
believe what hath befallen me, Zulith, Chancellor of Fawn
-- the most clever man on Serpent Isle: forced to flee from
an insane mage! Still, all is not lost: the treasure room
is well hidden and I have one of its two keys. Lady Yelinda
doth have the other, though I doubt she remembers it. The
so-called Serpent Armour is safe from that devil Iolo, and
I still have my freedom and my life. Yet I cannot leave Fawn
till I have secured all of the treasure!
Hah! 'Tis laughable to think about the titular ruler of
Fawn -- Lady Yelinda -- a woman that hath the intelligence
of a fish. 'Tis best that she spend the rest of her days trapped
in Gorlab, the fool! She thought that I was merely redecorating
her throneroom when in sooth I had constructed (with the help
of a Moonshadian mage) an illusionary wall in the southeast
room of the palace! That is where I had to store the Serpent
Armour. 'Tis safe from all, I tell you! PS: I must incorporate
these writings into my diary lest I forget!
Journey to the mint; ambush the hero there. Succeed in thy
mission and thou shalt be richly rewarded. There is but one
penalty for failure -- death! Remember, the Avatar often travels
with accursed companions, and they may be present. Ignore
the companions -- direct thine energies to one goal: the destruction
of the Avatar! Destroy this note. No evidence should be left
behind thee. -- Batlin
Honor be to thee, dear reader. This piece of parchment is
mine only means of communication with thee. Mad Iolo cruelly
removed my tongue, that I might lead by example and not by
words! I am so disenchanted... I cannot bear the fact that
I could not save the city from further plagues. Moreover,
there is absolutely no sign of the return of Batlin. What
is going to happen? Thou shouldst tell me, I beg of thee.
Order be to thee, my right good reader! Beware that when
the virtues are in imbalance, a whole new system is set in
motion. The Chaos Forces without the Order Forces create the
Chaos Anti-Forces. I hope thou dost understand what the implications
of such a change mean.
A virtue like Tolerance without Ethicality creates a lack
of standards of conduct and would lead, without a doubt, to
Anarchy. Enthusiasm without Discipline promises actions without
self-restraint that is Wantonness. Emotion deprived of Logic
would foster an inability to overcome emotional impulses with
rational thoughts, which augurs Insanity.
On the other hand, the Order Forces without the Chaos Forces
create the Order Anti-Forces. In this case, it means that
Ethicality without Tolerance would bring about disrespect
for the beliefs and rights of others. Discipline without Enthusiasm
would foster a spirit of hopelessness which retards positive
action. That is called Apathy. Logic without Emotion leads
to self-advancing actions taken without regard to the wants
or needs of others. That is called Ruthlessness.
Hence, it is now obvious that only Discipline can correct
Gwenno. Have this in remembrance and take care of thyself,
Through darkness and despair
The land was bare
Looking for Thee, Mondain
Alas, but in vain
My soul and mine heart
Pierced by Cupid's dart
Will never heal
Without Mondain's will
Love is a desolate land
Unless Thou, Mondain
Takest me by the hand
To thy youth fountain
NOTES TO MYSELF
Methinks I knowest now why the blink spell no longer works.
These cursed teleportation storms disturb the ether in such
a way that the spell often ceases to function. Other times,
it is partially successful, as when I cast it on Vasel's predecessor.
Nasty business, that. After many weeks of fruitless study,
I can only conclude that the blink spell simply no longer
works correctly. Nine times out of ten, nothing at all happens,
while the results of the tenth occurrence are best not pondered.
The most obvious reason for these failures is this blasted
weather we have been experiencing. Maybe when the storms lessen,
I can divine the answer. Until then, I will continue in mine
attempts to find the answer. Notes this day, by Gustacio.
THE MAGIC COMPASS
This is said to be the legendary artifact which guided Erstam
the Mad during the voyage to Serpent Isle. To use it, thou
must set the Compass upon the ground, and then chant the mantra
'Yleg Ort.' According to legend, the compass will show thee
the way to travel, but only if thou art worthy. As for myself,
I have never been able to make the damn thing work. Hence,
I am donating it to the Seminarium.
Filbercio the MageLord
I have been here for more days than I am able to remember,
though I have not forgotten the day I entered this forsaken
cave which has become my tomb. That was 2-29-0227. But my
food was depleted long ago, and the rats are more interested
in eating me than letting me eat them. My strength is gone,
as is my will. If thou dost find this, please tell Mythra
I love her. --Denyel
Welcome, travellers, and be at ease. This rest house is
open to all who Walk in Beauty. Feel free to take whatever
food thou mayest need. As a courtesy to other travellers,
please leave the rest house in the manner that thou didst
BROKEN OAR INN
Welcome to the Broken Oar, the finest inn in the known world!
While thou art staying at our fine inn, thou mayest like to
try our fine food. Inquire downstairs with the bartender,
Jendon. We hope that thou dost enjoy thy stay at our establishment...
Dearest Devra, I hate having to leave thee for even a moment,
but my father is as unmovable as a mountain! The months that
we shared have been unforgettable. I will miss thee so much!
I will miss thy wondrous red hair, thy silken skin, and thy
lovely voice. I will miss all of thee. Please write to me.
As thou knowest, I shall be going back to our inn, the Sleeping
Bull. Love, Angus