Saturday, March 22, 2014

Episode 99: Ragnarok

MechaLance had just attempted to purloin Lord Leikbul's giant warhammer when one of his compatriots drew the final card to his Bifrost Bridge hand. It was, oddly enough, the Ace of Hammers, the last card needed to complete 'Ragnarok' and open the mystical gate to Asgard. The giant threw his cards down on the table, stood up abruptly and bellowed "RAGNAROK!!!!" into the sky.

His two companions looked at the table and the cards. They too started to scream in unison: "RAGNAROK!!" Lord Leikbul, hearing the ruckus, released his grip on his hammer and dropped to the ground. The other three giants leaped off the bazaar's gaming car and drew their warhammers, and immediately set to beating the ground in unison with their chants.

*boom* *boom*
RAGNAROK! *boom* *boom* RAGNAROK! *boom* *boom* RAGNAROK! *boom* *boom*

Lord Leikbul, casting about for a warhammer that wasn't there, turned to the forest behind the the three ships and hollered "FLOEFI!" A large, blue, very familiar-looking dragon rose up and out of the woods 50 yards behind Xeno on the bridge of Agatha. As it beat its wings to gain altitude, Spencer took note, and performed a slow striptease, preparing himself to fire a crotchlaser if needed. Gigamesh, looking out over the forest, could see a faint rainbow wake forming behind the beast, spreading out behind it like a pair of unicorn wings.

Xoe and Takemiya, having just placed 10k on themselves to end the world, looked from the frost giants to the dragon to one another and had the same thought: to return to the Rutvegas gaming table and put 5K down on Hrung Leikbul, just in case.

Floefi rises into the night...
Xeno, seeing the dragon rise out of the woods very near to him, made a move to take the ships out of harm's way, only to notice a whorl of clouds forming and closing in on the area. Asking Agatha for guidance, he determines it too risky to take the ships into the coming storm, and instead opts to attack the dragon single-handedly by trying to fly into his heart.

But as he closes in, Xeno sees and feels a distortion, a ripple in the time-space continuum, and the dragon warps and waves right in front of his eyes. On the ground, the others can see the bluish silhouette ripple, waver, then wink out of sight.

The dragon gets closer. The rippling gets bigger. And then, with an awful tearing, ripping and rending sound, the sky opens up and swallows everyone whole.

The floor drops out of your mind and you fall down the elevator shaft of consciousness
and land in the bowling alley of the id.

Kobayashi was the first to notice something different. Pain. Pain like he hadn't felt in a while. The pain was coming from his right buttock. His decidedly corporeal buttock. He was sitting on a rock, somewhere on a flat, rocky plain. Here, he saw Takemiya, there, Xoe. Gigamesh. Spencer. Everyone but Xeno, it would appear. It was night. And over yonder, about 100 yards away, there it was...

Not quite as expected...

At this end, a gate. Looming large, made of wrought iron...

And storming towards it, from the gloom off to the left, were the four frost giants. They were making their way purposefully towards the bridge. Lord Leikbul was reaching into a pouch at his waist and spreading what appeared to be bony peas behind him. As they walked, the peas hit the ground, sprouted, and grew into an army of frost giants.

Shown smaller than actual size.
Takemiya headed to the gate. Fleet of foot, he arrived well ahead of the frost giants and made a grisly discovery. He found another giant lying on the ground. His throat had been cut, and black blood spilled out on the sand in front of the gate. He clutched a large horn (made of horn) in his cold, dead hand. Takemiya quickly pried it loose and made away with it, back to the rest of the group.

Xoe, on an unceasing quest for strange and bizarre magical items, tried to circle around behind the giants in order to procure a few specimens for herself. But a strange glittering light from behind her caused her to pause for what turned out to be a crucial moment. For behind her, Gigamesh was aiming a handheld lighting device up under Spencer's robes. The scintillating light raced through Spencer's skeleton and was focused into a deadly beam of energy, emanating from his pelvis. The beam caught the frost giants unaware, and cut them all down from behind. Xoe hops up, and immediately heads for the giants. She procures Leikbul's bag.

It's actually good for him...
Gigamesh turned off the beam. Spencer was no longer in his robes. Instead, he was wearing black pants, and a black t-shirt for the band "Götterdämmerung". He was smoking a cigarette, French inhaling so the smoke trailed from his mouth into his crystalline nosehole and out the sides of his skull.

Suddenly, a large figure appeared on the bridge. He appeared to be carrying a small child. As the large, muscular man drew nearer, it could be seen that it was Xeno in his arms. The man put Xeno down gently just inside the wrought iron gate. Xeno stretched, looked around sleepily and exchanged words with the man. As the others watched in wonder, they could see the exchange get heated. In an instant, the man threw Xeno though the gate and out onto the plain. Xeno's crumpled body lay still for a few moments, twitched, then slowly picked itself up and dusted itself off.

Seeing Xeno rise up from the ground, the man immediately went to the gates and tore them open. He was stopped in his tracks by the body of the dead giant at his feet. Takemiya clutched his newly-acquired horn nervously as the man seemed to be looking about the corpse for something, turning him over as if he was searching for an object that he knew was in the giant's possession. the man finally looked up and noticed the group of onlookers and immediately stormed forth to confront them.

Xeno made an attempt to distract the man's charge by hurling pebbles and trying to fong, but he only succeeded in becoming a victim of his wrath as he turned and bore down on him instead. Takemiya, seeing what could yet again be the end of Xeno's life, tried to distract the giant by blowing his stolen horn. But alas, he had neither the skill nor the giant mouth to coax a note from the magical instrument.

"WHAT, BY ALL THE GODS IN ASGARD, IS YOUR NAME, PUNY MORTAL???" the big man bellowed, spittle and bile foaming down on Xeno in intermittent gobs. Xeno, caught up in a genuine wave of mortal panic cowered, trembled, and knees knocking, could only squeak "Pamela?"

The big man threw his head back and roared laughter. He stooped down and put a beefy arm around Xeno's shoulders. "I LIKE THIS GUY! PAMELA INDEED! HAHA!" The mood was lifted and the others joined the two new friends. Takemiya guiltily handed over the horn to the man who introduced himself as the god of thunder, Thor.

Thor looked over the pile of frost giant halves as well as the puddles of liquefying proto-giants and clucked his godly tongue. "Wow. We are indebted to you indeed. Who knows how this plot would have played out. You just may have spared us the end of known reality."

Thor turned to Xoe and winked. Xoe had many thoughts. Very few of them were nice ones.

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