Sunday, March 13, 2011

Episode 29: Frozen Lump Sweet Frozen Lump

The final gifts had been distributed, the final pints had been drunk and the final concubines had given their final frankincense and myrrh rubdowns. The Caliph had let the crew know of the existence of the elemental wormhole - the one opened up by Xeno's unfortunate interaction with the Elemental Throne.

The Caliph brought the silken cloud to the wormhole - a giant hurricane spewing fire and steam into the Plane of Air - and bid the crew adieu. Then, one by one, everyone popped though the smoky bubbleportal back to the Prime Material Plane and onto...


At first, a number of the party groaned as they thought they'd been transported back to Aquae Sulis - and gods knows when. But as the intrepid Saladin transformed into death hawk form (and thusly avoiding becoming a druid pancake) he climbed back into the sky and surveyed the surroundings. In the distance.... the ocean. White sails billowing in the breeze. Closer in, the familiar sight of Port Harbor, the quaint tourist town nestled in peak fall foliage. And below, Saladin's comrades, sliding across a small shelf of ice to what looked like a frozen lump - right where DCM headquarters used to be.

Meanwhile, in another plane entirely, the hulking ice devil Mytzlplk was receiving a report from Chief Antagonizer Grewellyn, deep within the scintillating glacial palace of Pwn.

"Haave yoou foound thaat deetestable gnoome yeet?" hissed the devil through his large, razor-sharp mandibles. Ice cold venom, reflective like mercury, dripped from the chitinous tips and pooled at his feet. A minion scuttled out from a trapdoor at the base of the devil's frozen throne, collecting the venom to sell at a later date on the open market. Minion's gotta live, yo.

"Y-yes my liege," stuttered Grewellyn. He hadn't bargained for what an outright bastard this Mytzlplk had turned out to be. Sure, he had sent his resume all over the Hells, and the 8th level of Hell was reputed to be one of the nastier ones (especially when compared to Mammon's Vile Level Of Naughty Luxury) but this one just gave Grewellyn the heebie jeebies.
"I have sent a detachment of your Bone Guards to his domicile with express instructions. I am sure that they will have him in custody shortly. And as your Lordship will recall," he winced as he embarked on reminding Mytzlplk about his recent shortcomings in the memory department, "the Lady Gawgaw is overseeing the mission personally."

Mytzlplk turned his faceted eyes and, to Grewellyn, it looked like he was looking far away through the mists of Time.

"Yees, the Laady Gaawgaw... Exceeedingly beautiful... Deeliciously cruuel... I am ceertain I wiill haave hiis heead in my haands byy moorning..."

Mytzlplk shifted in his frozen throne. Grewellyn looked away with a modicum of embarassment and, bowing low, backed his way out of the chamber.

It took a moment for everyone's inertia to settle out on the ice. Takemiya broke through the thin ice that covered the inlet and found himself cold, wet and alerting the hidden team of translucent blue skeletons to DCM's return home. Immediately, the four skeletons sprung forth from the water and a melee ensued.

Luckily for DCM, numbers and tactics overcame surprise and superior cutlery as the skeletons were quickly dispatched. Only Saladin suffered the ignominy of being almost killed as a hurtling blue sphere of icy flame sent the scent of deep-fried falcon across the land.

(Moments later, in port Harbor, a down-and-out food vendor was inspired to, at extreme peril, update the items on his portable lunch menu. 'Grylled Skwab of Falcune' sounded like a surefire winner to him.)

After warp-marbling and bear-hugging the final skeleton out of existence, the crew surveyed the lump that was their headquarters. It looked like someone wanted to send them a message - and it wasn't a very nice one at all.

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