Reservoir Companions

By Blackthorn Dragon aka David Clarke.

[Inside the Sleeping Bull Inn]

AVATAR: "Ok so what do we still need to do in order to get on with our quest?"

DUPRE: "We still need to get back the Helm of Courage from the goblins."

SHAMINO: "That and the fact that Iolo is still sitting in the Jail in Monitor."

AVATAR: "Hmm the goblins, they're pretty mean aren't they?"

DUPRE: "They will eat us alive if they catch us."

AVATAR: "Ick, well Shamino you go free Iolo after lunch, meanwhile, what to do about the goblins."

SHAMINO: "Well the people of Monitor have fought goblins all their lives maybe they would have some tips on how best to defeat the goblins."

AVATAR: "But that would mean talking to people to find out things. By the time we've done that we'll to have talked to everyone and their grandmothers and still be no further along."

DUPRE: "We could just go and launch a frontal assault upon the vile creatures, and trust in our virtue that we will triumph."

AVATAR: "Are you drunk Dupre? That would be even more hard work then talking to people about the goblins. Not to mention that these are man eating goblins. No we need to find out a simple yet extremely clever plan to defeat these goblins."

DEVRA: "Here's your bill gentlemen."

AVATAR: "I've got the bill, you guys take care of the tip."

[The Avatar waits until Shamino has put his share of the tip on the table then concentrates for a moment and mutters REL YLEM. Suddenly about a hundred Monetari appear on the table.]

AVATAR: "Well there's the bill paid for."

SHAMINO: "Hmmppff, well what about you Dupre? Throw in your share of the tip."

DUPRE: "Ahh she doesn't deserve a tip"

SHAMINO: "What do you mean?? She made a good meal and was very courteous. She darn well does deserve a tip"

DUPRE: "Well I just don't think that she really deserves a tip."

SHAMINO: "You do realize that not everyone can be a companion and be fed and have their needs taken care of right away don't you? Some people have to work for a living."

AVATAR: "And waitressing along with innkeeping, farming, shopkeeping, training, and healing are the only few jobs available to non-companions."

DUPRE: "Yes I realize that. But I don't tip for just doing your job. I tip if I feel that the service rendered was exceptional."

AVATAR: "What does she have to do to get a tip? Bring your food out and feed it to you herself?"

SHAMINO: "Huh, I'd tip over fifteen percent for that. Now come on Dupre you cough up your share of the tip."

DUPRE: "Yeah, she fed us, but she was only average. I mean, I ordered Ale and she only filled my mug twelve times. Now when I order Ale I expect my mug to be filled at least twenty times, and besides the Avatar threw in enough to hire half an army."

AVATAR: "That's it!!! That's how we'll get the Helm of Courage back from the Goblins we'll hire us some.......RESERVOIR COMPANIONS

DUPRE: "What companions???"

AVATAR: "Err I mean Reserve Companions"

SHAMINO: "Reservoir? Where did that come from?"

AVATAR: "Sorry I just mis-spoke myself"

SHAMINO: "I mean there's no reservoirs around here."

DUPRE: "Or even any dams."

AVATAR: "It just slipped out."

SHAMINO: "Or dikes..."

AVATAR: "Just give it a rest would you."

DUPRE: "Or fjords...." AVATAR & SHAMINO: "Fjords???"

DUPRE: "Well, I just like the sound of the word. Fjord, fjord fjord fjord fjord.....

[Fade out to a flying carpet. Stefano is driving and on the back lies Simon bleeding horribly from a gut wound]

SIMON: "Agghh it killed me, I'm dying arrgggh!!"

STEFANO: "Hush now, you're hurt real bad, but you're not dying."

SIMON: "Urrgghh, I'm dying I'm dying glaaggh!! I'm scared Stefano, I'm scared and I'm dying."

STEFANO: "Oh so now you're a healer? Are you a healer? Well are you?"

SIMON: "No, oohhhh."

STEFANO: "Too bad that would have solved a lot of problems; well then you don't really know what you're talking about then do you? Now listen I'm taking you back to the rendevous, I'll contact the Avatar and he'll fix you up and you'll be okay. Now say it 'I'm going to be okay' say it, say it."

SIMON: "Arrgghh I'm gonna be okay auuggghh!!"

[Stefano bursts into a small ransacked cottage carrying Simon]

SIMON: "Glaahh, where are we? ugghhh."

STEFANO: "We're at the cottage. Now who's a tough guy, huh? Who's a tough guy?"

[Stefano dumps Simon down on a cot and proceeds to look at his wound]

STEFANO: "I'm afraid I can't help you, but when the Avatar gets here he'll be able to help you."

SIMON: "I was panicking back on the carpet but I've got my senses back now, glaagghh, the fact is I've been stabbed in the belly and without healing I'm going to die."

STEFANO: "I can't take you back to Monitor to see Harnna or to Fawn to see ..."

SIMON: "You don't have to take me anywhere, just drop off at the obelisk near Monitor, and I can take care of myself oooowwww."

STEFANO: "Listen to me you're going to be fine, along with the groin, the stomach is the most painful place a guy can get stabbed in. You've got days before you die, you'll linger on in terrible agony wishing you were dead, but you'll live, time is on your side."

[Cottage door bursts open and in stalks Wilfred]

WILFRED: "Was that a bloody setup or what? Oh crap Mr. Ginseng got tagged? Where's Mr. Spider Silk?"

STEFANO: "Dead."


STEFANO: "How do you think? The goblins killed him."

WILFRED: "This is bad this is really bad. Somebody screwed us up big time!!"

STEFANO: "You really think we were setup?"

WILFRED: "I don't think we were setup, I know we were setup. I mean where did all those goblins come from? One minute they're not there the next minute they are. I didn't hear any war cries. That one goblin in the hut started beating on the drum, you've got about four minutes before the tribe comes unless a hunting party just happens to be walking by at that exact moment. I mean in one minute there were like twenty goblins all armed to the teeth and all just there. I just about didn't come back here, whoever set us up knows about this place. There could've been goblins waiting here, there could be goblins coming here right now."

STEFANO: "Lets go into the kitchen. Mr. Ginseng your gonna be okay, you hear me?"

SIMON: "Ooohhhhhh!!!!"

[Kitchen: Wilfred is busy smashing crockery and swearing]

STEFANO: "Ok be cool I need you to be cool."

[Wilfred smashes one more piece of crockery]

WILFRED: "Yeah okay I'm cool now."

STEAFANO: "Ok lets just relax, we can have some food."

WILFRED: "Sounds good, you know ever since I joined this project I've been getting more and more hungry all the time."

STEFANO: "Yeah me too. Ok lets go over what happened. We got into the chief's hut, the drums sounded and all of a sudden there were goblins there. I mean they weren't there, I blinked and then there they were. Then everybody went gwanni crap and Mr. Black Pearl started shooting at everything that moved.

WILFRED: No that's wrong the goblins didn't show up until Mr. Black Pearl went nuts. I'm not saying that they weren't there, just that they didn't come out of the woodwork until Mr. Black Pearl started shooting. That's how I know we were set up Mr. Bloodmoss.

STEFANO: "Look enough of this Mr. Bloodmoss stuff call me...

WILFRED: "Hey don't tell me your real name, I don't want to know it, I'm sure not going to tell you mine.

STEFANO: "Ok ok you're right, this is bad. How did you get out?"

WILFRED: "I valiantly fought my way out"

[Flashback to the Goblin Village, Wilfred running towards the cave entrance]

WILFRED: "Agghhh, the goblins are going to get me, they're going to catch me and eat me, someone help meeee.... I don't want to be a part of this any more, aghhh."

[Wilfred runs into the tunnel and keeps running. Back at the present:]

WILFRED: "Think I might have tagged a couple of goblins, what about you?"

STEFANO: "Yeah I got a few goblins."

WILFRED: "Did you see Mr. Black Pearl, man was he nuts or what?"

STEFANO: "I've never seen anyone that insane before. Why would the Avatar pick someone like that? I'm surprised he didn't blast us in all of that. I came so close to taking him out myself.

WILFRED: "Me too, I mean everybody panics, but you pull yourself together and not start shooting everything that moves."

STEFANO: "No, what you're supposed to do is act like a Companion, a psychopath isn't a Companion a psychopath is a menace."

WILFRED: "Well do you have any idea what happened to everyone else?"

STEFANO: "Mr. Ginseng and I hopped on a carpet and Mr. Spider Silk floored it. After that I don't know."

WILFRED: "After that it was every Companion for himself. But as for Mr. Black Pearl and Mr. Sulfurous Ash. I don't have the foggiest. After I got out I kept running and didn't look back. I figure either the goblins ate them alive, or killed them and ate them later."

STEFANO: "You got away couldn't they have?"

WILFRED: "I don't know, they weren't as brave as I was."

STEFANO: "You don't think one of them got the Helm and flew the coop?"

WILFRED: "No, I've got the Helm."

STEFANO: "That's my boy, Where??"

WILFRED: "I stashed it. Look I think we should go get it right now, ‘cause if we stay here we should have our heads examined."

STEFANO: "Meeting here was the plan."

WILFRED: " I say the plan becomes null and void once we find out we've got a serpent in the house. We don't have a clue where Mr. Black Pearl or Mr. Sulfurous Ash are. For all we know the goblins could be torturing them right now. They may not know our names but they sure know about this place."

STEFANO: "I swear to the Great Earth Serpent I think I'm AN SANCTed."

WILFRED: "Huhh?"

STEFANO: "Cursed I think I'm cursed. Last job I did it turned out I was being set up and got sent to the Mountains of Freedom for my efforts."

WILFRED: "So who's the serpent this time? Mr. Spider Silk? Mr. Sulfurous Ash? The Avatar? I mean the Avatar set this whole thing up, maybe he set us up too."

STEFANO: "Nah, I don't buy it. The Avatar and I helped each other out a while back and I can definitely say he doesn't know about this."

WILFRED: "Well I've known the Avatar for a short while, but saying he definitely doesn't know about this? The only thing I definitely know is that I didn't do it. For all I know you're the serpent."

STEFANO: "Well for all I know YOU'RE the serpent!"

WILFRED: "All right now you're using your head. For all we know he's the serpent."

[Wilfred points vaguely in the direction of Simon]

STEFANO: "Hey that Companion in there is dying because of a sword I saw him take, so don't be calling him a serpent."

WILFRED: "Look you know I'm right somebodies a bloody serpent. Hey where's the toilet in this shack, I've got to ‘discharge the magic wand'"

STEFANO: "There isn't one."

[A slightly pained look come to Wilfred's face]

WILFRED: "Uhh, I left something in the other room, I think I'll go get it right now."

[Wilfred runs out of the room]

Mr. Blood Moss

[Avatar and Stefano are sitting and sipping drinks in Frigidazzi's study.]

AVATAR: "So then why did you become a mage?"

STEFANO: "I thought there was big money in magic, but when I found out there wasn't I turned to thievery."

AVATAR: "Where did you get the idea there was big money in magecraft?"

STEFANO: "From my sister, she used to brag about how she got a hundred Guilders a trick"

AVATAR: "I see. Anyway you still doing ‘jobs'?"

STEFANO: "When the right ones come around, I do them, yeah. Why you got something you need pilfered?"

AVATAR: "As a matter of fact I do. I need you to get a Helm out of the goblin camp."

STEFANO: "A Helm, I don't know anybody on all of the Serpent Isle who'll buy any type of used armour. You sure you can move it?"

AVATAR: "Oh, I know one person who's very interested in getting their hands on this particular Helm."

STEFANO: "What's the exposure like?"

AVATAR: "Five or six minutes tops. You'll be going in at dawn so most of the goblins should be asleep."

STEFANO: "And what's my cut in this?"

AVATAR: "Virtuous, truly virtuous." [Back at the Cottage]

[Stefano is in the main room leaning over Simon, when Wilfred enters.]

WILFRED: "Oh man is Mr. Ginseng dead?"

STEFANO: "No, he's just out cold, but without medical attention he will die."

WILFRED: "Well what are we going to do then, we can't just up and take him to a healer. The goblins are sure to find us then."

STEFANO: "We could get in touch with the Avatar. The Avatar could take Mr. Ginseng to a healer, the Avatar could bring a healer to us, hell, the Avatar could heal Mr. Ginseng."

WILFRED: "Considering the Avatar wants anything to do with us. I mean we screwed up pretty royally back there in the goblin village, we've got bloodthirsty goblins and dead or missing Companions. If I were the Avatar I'd be wanting to stay as far away from us as possible."

STEFANO: "Before you got here Mr. Ginseng was asking me to take him to the Obelisk. He was practically begging me too."

WILFRED: "Well I guess that's his choice, as odd as it might be. He only knows our reagent names and nothing else about us so he can't fink on us if the goblins get him."

STEFANO: "Well he does know where I'm from"

WILFRED: "What?? How did that happen?"

STEFANO: "It just sort of happened during a conversation we were having."

WILFRED: "Well that's not too bad then."

STEFANO: "Well he also knows my first name, but only my first name."

WILFRED: "Do you have a last name? Does anyone have a last name on this world?"

STEFANO: "Oops good point, but we still need to take him to the Obelisk."

WILFRED: "We aren't taking him anywhere. He can identify you to the goblins, and if he identifies you that brings the goblins one step closer to me and I can't let that happen."

STEFANO: "Why you little coward."

[Stefano hits Wilfred and knocks him to the floor and starts to kick him around]

WILFRED: "Quit kicking me and let me get up so I can pound you fair and square."

STEFANO: "I'm a thief what makes you think I'll fight fair."

[Stefano and Wilfred both pull their wands on each other.]

STEFANO: "You want to shoot me go ahead I dare you."

WILFRED: "Look, quit acting like a rookie and start acting like a Companion. You made this situation and I'm trying to deal with it"

IOLO: "Little gwanni shouldn't play so hard; one of you might end up getting skinned alive."

[Iolo saunters in carrying a bottle of wine and taking drinks from it. His triple crossbow slung over his shoulder.]

WILFRED: "Mr. Black Pearl. What happened to you? We figured you were dead. Did you see what happened to Mr. Sulfurous Ash? Well c'mon answer me."

[Iolo just remains silent]

STEFANO: "Enough. Look we're already freaked out we don't need you acting all freaky too."

IOLO: "Okay lets chat."

STEFANO: "First off we think we've got a serpent in the house."

WILFRED: "I guarantee we got a serpent in the house."

IOLO: "What makes you say that? T'would not be virtuous to be unhonest."

STEFANO: "Look this place isn't secure anymore so we're leaving."

IOLO: "We aren't going anywhere, just stay where you are."

STEFANO: "What? I've had just about enough of you. It's your fault we're in this mess you trigger happy nutcase."

IOLO: "What art thou talking about?"

STEFANO: "I'm talking about the chieftains hut and you going on your shooting spree"

IOLO: "They did'st deserve it. They were going to set off an alarm and I told them ‘thou should'st not do that' and they did so they got it."

STEFANO: "What about the fact that you almost shot me you fool."

[At this point Stefano points his wand at Iolo]

IOLO: "Art thou just going to flap around all day little mongbat, or art thou going to bite?"

STEFANO: "What???"

IOLO: "I said, art thou just going to flap around all day little mongbat, or art thou going to bite?"

[Iolo throws away his drink and Stefano walks towards him. Wilfred jumps in between the two before they can come to blows.]

WILFRED: "Would you guys give it a rest. Where do you think we are on a playground? Am I the only professional here? You're both acting like a pair of Dragons. You ever been around Dragons? Always trying to flame one another."

STEFANO: "You said yourself you thought about taking him out."

IOLO: "Thou did'st say that? Is that virtuous?"

WILFRED: "Yeah I said that, but that was then and this is now. Right now he's the only one I completely trust. He's too homicidal to be goblin spy."

STEFANO: "Are you taking his side?"

WILFRED: "I'm not taking anybodies side, but right now somebody is sticking a red hot firedoom staff up our collective butts and I want to know who's name is on the handle."

IOLO: "Wow, this tis truly exciting. Now come outside with me I've got something in my backpack that I think you should see."

[Iolo, Stefano, and Wilfred step outside and go over to a backpack sitting against a tree.]

WILFRED: "Well we still need to get out of here."

IOLO: "We stick to the plan, which is to stay here."

STEFANO: "Says who?"

IOLO: "Says Dupre."

WILFRED: "When did you talk to him?"

IOLO: "On the way over here."

STEFANO: "Well why didn't you tell us that in the first place?"

IOLO: "Thou did'st not ask."

[Iolo opens his pack and inside is a goblin blinking at the sun.]

STEFANO: "You are truly a piece of work."

IOLO: "Maybe our little green boy here can tell us something about this serpent business you two have been hissing about. Now lets get him inside."

Mr. Black Pearl

[Frigidazzi's house, Avatar and Frigidazzi are sitting down to a light brunch, still dressed in housecoats when Dupre walks in]

DUPRE: "Avatar Shamino just brought Iolo back."

AVATAR: "Excellent, Frigidazzi, would you be a dear and excuse us for a while"

[Frigidazzi walks out as Iolo walks in. The Iolo that enters though is not the merry harp player that people once knew. This Iolo has a maniacal gleam in one eye and a patch over the other, a shaved head and assorted tatoos]

AVATAR: "Iolo!! Glad you finally got out of that Monitor prison. I would have gotten you out sooner but I've been kind of.... busy yeah that's it busy."

[Avatar is busy watching Frigidazzi's hind end as she walks out]

IOLO: "Avatar, they did'st lock me in a cell with a huge goblin.He said to call him Bubba and he he...the things he did to me Avatar"

AVATAR: "Well you're out now so everything is ok, ..."

IOLO: "... kept on calling me Sweet Cheeks!"

AVATAR: " can come back to adventuring with me....."

IOLO: "... and asking me to play his ‘instrument' for him."

AVATAR: "..and the other companions, then you'll be feeling back to normal again."

IOLO: "No I can't, I'm only on parole. I need to show I can get a real job and not be a menace to society before I get to go free,"

AVATAR: "Name?"

IOLO: "My name is Iolo. Avatar has it really been that long?"

AVATAR: "No the name of your parole officer?"

IOLO: "Oh it's Shazzana."

AVATAR: "Ooohhh, she's a tough one this might be tricky."

DUPRE: "Avatar, I have a plan. I can talk to Lady Yelinda and get her to hire Iolo"

AVATAR: "You and the Lady Y. work out your little differences?"

DUPRE: "Yeah we real cool now."

IOLO: "But if I'm working for Lady Yelinda I can't be with you."

DUPRE: "But you won't really be working for Yelinda, we just get one of the maids to check in for you. Shazzana comes by and 'Oh Iolo is busy teaching a music lesson you'll have to come by later.' She comes by again and 'Oh you just missed him he had to go to Moonshade to pick up a lute string"

IOLO: "Sounds good but what do I do in the meantime?"

AVATAR: "Well pretty much just sit around, we've got a special 'project' in the works."

DUPRE: "Avatar, why don't we let Iolo help on our project. He's someone we know who's virtuous and can trust him. Plus it will give him some time to deal with a few of the personal issues he seems to be suffering from."

[At this point Iolo is just sitting staring off into space and humming while cleaning his fingernails with a burst arrow]

AVATAR: "I like the idea, what do you say Iolo?"

IOLO: "Okay, I'll do it."

[Dupre is seen walking along the paths of the Dark Pathway talking into a Crystal ball]

DUPRE: "Hey Shamino, I need to talk to the Avatar, we've got major problems happening even as we speak.... I know you know that, that's what I need to talk to the Avatar about, to find out what the Avatar wants done."

[Inside the cottage: Stefano Iolo and Wilfred throw the goblin to ground and proceed to kick and beat the snot out of it. Meanwhile in the Dark Pathway:]

DUPRE: "Look all I know is what Iolo said. The whole thing turned into a fire fest and he took a goblin hostage just to get out of there.... "

[At the cottage: the kicking and hitting continue]

DUPRE: "Do I sound like I'm joking? He's out there traveling around with a goblin in his pack..."

[At the cottage: still with the beating]

DUPRE: "I don't know who's got the helm. I don't know if anyone has the helm. I don't know who' dead, I don't know who's been eaten alive, I don't even know who's alive!!"

[At the cottage: You guessed it...]

DUPRE: "I'll know in a couple of minutes, I'm almost there now, but what do I tell these guys about the Avatar? You sure? Okay, I'll tell them the Avatar said that."

[At the cottage: The goblin is tied to a chair and Stefano and Wilfred and trying to question him.]

STEFANO: "Okay tell us what you know and we'll stop hitting you."

GOBLIN: "Me know nothing"

WILFRED: "Yes you do tell us!!"

[Wilfred hits the goblin in the face. At this point the door opens and in walks Dupre]

WILFRED: "Hey Dupre we got a goblin."

DUPRE: "So I see. Now what is going on here? Sweet Mother of Moonshine, Mr. Ginseng is dead!!"

STEFANO: "Not yet but if we don't get help he will be soon."

WILFRED: "We were set up!! There we goblins waiting there for us."

DUPRE: "What?? Nobody set anybody up."

WILFRED: "And I say they did, you weren't there. That hut was crawling with goblins."

DUPRE: "Well what happened to Mr. Spider Silk and Mr. Sulfurous Ash?"

STEFANO: "Mr Spider Silk is dead and we don't know about Mr. Sulfurous Ash."

DUPRE: "Don't know? Well where could he be?"

IOLO: "Well either he's alive or he's not or the goblins have eaten him or they haven't"

STEFANO: "Well what did the Avatar say?"

DUPRE: "I don't know the Avatar wasn't around so I talked to Shamino and he said the Avatar was on the way here and was really pissed."

IOLO: "Pissed drunk or pissed mad?"

DUPRE: "Pissed mad what do you think."

WILFRED: "Told you he'd be mad."

[Dupre point to the goblin tied in the chair]

DUPRE: "I take it this is the goblin you were telling me about?"

STEFANO: "Yeah that's him."

DUPRE: "Why you beating on him?"

WILFRED: "So he'll tell us who set us up."

DUPRE: "You beat on this poor goblin long enough and he'll tell you he the MageLord's Lover but that doesn't mean its true. Now for my sake tell me just one little piece of good news. Who's got the Helm?"

WILFRED: "I've got the Helm. I stashed it in a hollow tree just in case this place was a goblin feast hall."

DUPRE: "Ok then. Mr. Garlic and Mr. Bloodmoss you're with me while we get the Helm. Mr Black Pearl you stay here and babysit these two. Now move"

STEFANO: "You can't leave him here he's psycho."

IOLO: "You see what I've had to put with? I come in here, tell these guys to wait here and next thing I know Mr. Bloodmoss is sticking his wand in my face threatening to blow my head off. Tis not virtuous."

STEFANO: "He's the reason the whole thing turned out like it did. Well what are you Mr. Garlic the silent partner? C'mon say something."

WILFRED: "Yeah okay, he was pretty nuts then, but he seems better now."

STEFANO: "This was Mr. Black Pearl, Blam Blam, Blam, Blam."

[While saying this Stefano mimes shooting people with a crossbow from about two feet away.]

IOLO: "Blam, Blam, Blam, Blam. Hee hee heee. I told those goblins not to try anything and they did so they got what they deserved."

STEFANO: "Going totally insane is what they deserved?"

IOLO: "I don't like alarms, or goblins for that matter."

DUPRE: "It doesn't matter now. What does matter is that we get this mess straightened up ASAP. Now lets go get that Helm."

[Dupre, Stefano and Wilfred leave the cottage. Iolo walk over to the goblin]

IOLO: "Now then where wert we?"

GOBLIN: "Me not no nothing. Me only been guard for two months. Me not told anything. You torture me all you like but me know no information."

IOLO: "Well, I don't really care what thou dost or dost not know, but I'm going to torture you anyway. Not for information but just for the thrill of torturing a goblin. All thou can hope for is a quick death... but thou art not going to get it."

[Iolo pulls out his crossbow and points it at the goblin's head while the goblin thrashes about.]

IOLO: "No that would be too quick."

[At this point Iolo pulls out a dagger and starts to walk around the room and investigate the furnishings]

IOLO: "Oh look, an old music box. I just love music don't thou? I guess I should being a bard and all."

[Iolo activates the music box and the familiar melody of ‘Stones' begins to waft through the cottage]

IOLO: "I just love this song I wrote it you know."

[At this point Iolo begins to dance around in time to the music waving his dagger at the goblin, and making the odd light cut across the goblin's face.]

GOBLIN: "Urrgh, no more please mercy no more, please turn off music!!"

IOLO: "What thou ungrateful wretch if thou dos't not appreciate good music then thou certainly do not need this..."

[With that Iolo lunges over and cuts off the goblin's ear]

GOBLIN: "Agghhh, my ear you cut me ear off you mad!!"

IOLO: "Yes I am mad. Mad at what a goblin did to me in the prison cell in Monitor"

GOBLIN: [looking dazed and ready to faint] "What you say?"

IOLO: "I'm sorry" [He bends and picks up the loose ear, and shouts into it] "I said I'm mad at what that goblin did to me in the prison cell!!"

[Iolo continues to punch and hit the goblin until it falls unconscious. Iolo then leaves the cottage and comes back in a few moments later with a jug of ale.]

IOLO: "Wake up thou, I'm not done with thee yet"

[Iolo proceeds to slap the goblin around until it awakens]

GOBLIN: "Whaa? What you do with that jug?"

IOLO: "Oh thou wilt see...."

[Iolo pours the ale over the goblin then makes a trail of ale away from the goblin and pulls out a Burst Arrow]

GOBLIN: "Arrggghhh!!"

IOLO: "Oops did that burn. You know as soon as I loose this arrow it will explode and the ale will catch fire and you'll go up in a puff of greasy foul smelling smoke. I can hardly wait."

GOBLIN: "No!! Please don't burn me. Me got wife, she plenty mean, and when she finds out me dead she kill me!!"

IOLO: "Oops your outburst startled me, I almost dropped the arrow before I was ready, but now goblin... You will die."

[Just as Iolo prepares to throw the arrow multiple blasts of lightning strike him and he falls dead, the arrow falling harmlessly at his side. In the corner Simon can bee seen sitting up point his magic wand at Iolo]

SIMON: "Hey goblin you okay?"

GOBLIN: "Urrgh, me alive why?"

SIMON: "What's your name?"

GOBLIN: "Me called Gronk."

SIMON: "What's your last name?"

GOBLIN: "No last name just Gronk."

SIMON: "Ok Gronk, I'm really a goblin."

GOBLIN: "Me know, me seen you before. You super secret agent Simon double oh zero, licence to act like human."

SIMON: "That's right, now listen to me. This is a sting, chief Pomdirgun is waiting just a little ways off to catch these so called heros."

GOBLIN: "The what him waiting for, look at me, got ear cut off ME DEFORMED."

SIMON: "Just shut up about you and look at me, I'm dying right here even as we speak. Now listen we can't act until the Avatar shows up. So we just lay here and bleed until the Avatar shows up got it? So just don't wimp out on me now Gronk."

Mr. Ginseng

[The Goblin Mess Hall: Simon as a goblin enters and walks up to Pomdirgun]

SIMON: "Oog, Avatar try to get back Helm again, guess who him pick as companion?"

POMDIRGUN: "Ugghh this better not be joke."

SIMON: "Glub, no joke, me in big time. Me and Avatar 'tight'. Little while ago Avatar say want companions to do project. Me volunteer. Two days later me get message say Avatar pick me and people come pick me up. So companion Dupre come get me and take me to Blue Boar Inn. There me meet Avatar and Mr. Blood Moss. Me Mr. Ginseng."

POMDIRGUN: "Mr. Ginseng? Ho ho ho, then what Mr. Ginseng? Glurp."

SIMON: "Me say me good adventurer and goblin hunter, me stay cool under pressure."

POMDIRGUN: "Gleep, sound good, you use Baby Gwanni and Fawnish Female Swim Team Story, to gain their trust. It go over big time with do good adventurer types."

SIMON: "You mean like time me caught baby Gwanni and ate it raw while it still screaming?"

POMDIRGUN: "No, no, Baby Gwanni and Fawnish Female Swim Team story go like this: One day while adventuring me find baby gwanni trapped in goblin made cage. Baby Gwanni say 'please help me the nasty goblins have trapped me to eat me after they skin my parents.' So me let him out and promise to help him find parents. For days me tracked wretched goblins only to find out me too late. Horrible goblins had already skinned baby's parents. If only me had been faster me moaned me could have saved nice gwannies. Baby gwanni tell me it not me fault, but me know its is. Me offer to take care of baby gwanni, it accept so me..."

[Fade to Blue Boar Inn where sit the Avatar, Stefano, Dupre, and Shamino listening to Simon, in human form spin his tale of heroism]

SIMON: "...headed back to the nearest city which happened to be Fawn. As I was walking near the sea I heard some women screaming and goblin war cries. I looked and saw it was goblins attacking what I was to find out later was the Fawnish Female Swim Team. The baby gwanni recognized the goblins as the same ones that had captured and skinned its parents. This then was my chance for righteous vengeance. I drew my sword and leaped at the goblins. I slew two before they even knew what hit them. Four more sought to gang up on me and surround me, but I cut them down too, ignoring the wounds that I received. The one left tried to run but I caught him and told him: 'Return to your goblin brethren and tell them if they mess with the Gwanni they mess with me!!' Then as punishment for its horrible crimes I cut off the goblins hands and sent it on its way. The swim team rushed over to me and asked me to name my reward. I told them that their safety and good health was reward enough. That night though as I guarded their sleep they found their own 'special' way of rewarding me."

AVATAR: "Wow, that's quite the story, but what about the gwanni?"

SIMON: "Well I knew in my heart that I couldn't properly take care of the little fella, but I knew that the swim team could. So after a tearful goodbye left him with the swim team. I hear he's their mascot now."

SHAMINO: [sniffling] "That's a beautiful story, I say he's in."

AVATAR: "Okay sounds like you can handle yourself, get your stuff and lets go meet your partners."

[Avatar is standing in front of a chalk board with a drawing of the Goblin Valley on it. Sitting on chairs watching the Avatar are Stefano, Simon, Wilfred, Iolo, Andrio, and Jorvin.]

AVATAR: "With the exception of Dupre, Shamino and myself we're going to be using aliases on this project. That way if one of you get caught and horribly tortured by the goblins you can't endanger others. Or myself"

JORVIN: "But if we know who you are, the Goblins can still get your name from us if they catch and torture us."

AVATAR: [whispering] "They can?! Oh crap and it was such a good plan too" [normal voice] "Well that's okay because I'm a truly brave and fearless adventurer so any ways your names are:"
[points to Stefano] "Mr. Blood Moss"
[points to Simon] "Mr. Ginseng"
[points to Iolo] "Mr. Black Pearl"
[points to Wilfred] "Mr. Garlic"
[points to Andrio] "Mr. Spider Silk"
[points to Jorvin] "Mr. Sulfurous Ash"

WILFRED: "Why do I have to be Mr. Garlic? Why can't we pick our own reagents?"

AVATAR: "Forget it. It doesn't work. If I let you guys pick your own reagents I'll have five guys all wanting to be Mr. Nightshade."

IOLO: "What does it matter?"

WILFRED: "That's easy for you to say Mr. BLACK PEARL, you've got a cool sounding name."

JORVIN: "The names don't really matter that much just drop it."

WILFRED: "Okay then lets trade I'll be Mr Sulfurous Ash and you can be Mr. Garlic."

JORVIN: "Not on your life 'stinky boy'."

WILFRED: "Oh so now all of a sudden the names DO matter."

STEFANO: "Well look on the bright side maybe if we meet Vasculio the Vampire he'll be afraid of you, Mr. Garlic."

WILFRED: "Oh oh, is that some kind of name quip Mr. Red Fungus? Hey I remember when I used to find Blood Moss living under logs in swamps."

AVATAR: "Enough of this!! The names stay as is. Now you can do this project two ways. My way or............"


AVATAR: "Or, or, or...."

JORVIN: "Or what?"

AVATAR: "Or do it Shamino's way."

SHAMINO: "What?? My way?"

WILFRED: "And what is exactly is Shamino's way?"

SHAMINO: "Yes Avatar, what is my way?"

AVATAR: "It's just the same as my way, now PAY ATTENTION and lets go adventuring."

[Just at the cave entrance to the Goblin Valley]

STEFANO: "Ok lets go over it. where are you?"

SIMON: "I stand outside the Hut and don't let anyone in or out"

STEFANO: "Mr. Spider Silk?"

SIMON: "He's the Magic carpet driver."

STEFANO: "Mr. Black Pearl and Mr. Sulfurous Ash?"

SIMON: "Goblin crowd control."

STEFANO: "Myself and Mr. Garlic?"

SIMON: "You take Pomdirgun in the back and make him give you Helm. Since we're going in at dawn there should be no patrols, hence no alarms."

STEFANO: "And that cute little bunny rabbit over there?"

SIMON: "Gutted on a spit while I drink its blood"

STEFANO: "Pardon?"

SIMON: "Uhhh, I said in my arms while I snuggle it."

STEFANO: "Okay, sound like you got it down let go back in the cave and get some sleep."

[Flying carpet comes careening through the sky and hits a tree then falls to the ground. The sound of goblin drums can be heard coming closer.]

ANDRIO: [Who is covered in blood] "Ahh, I can't see, Im blind agghhh..."

SIMON: "You're not blind you twit, you've just got blood in your eyes."

ANDRIO: "I'm bleeding?? Aahhh I hate blood!!!! I'm to young to bleed"

[Andrio jumps off the carpet and runs around until he runs head first into a tree and falls into a heap back on the carpet. Meanwhile Stefano jumps off the carpet and pulls out a pair of lightning wands and hides behind a tree. A few second later a pair of goblins run around the tree and are promptly shot by Stefano, who then runs back to the carpet.]

STEFANO: "There that should give us some time, how's Mr. Spider Silk?

SIMON: [looks down at Andrio and pokes him with his toe] "He's dead."

STEFANO: "Ok lets get his body off this rug and get it airborne again."

[Stefano starts to remove Andrio's body when the Death Knight materializes out of thin air.]

DEATH KNIGHT: "Now foul betrayer of Torrisso and Columna you will die!!"


[Stefano freezes in fear, while the Death Knight pulls his sword and prepares to kill Stefano, when Simon leaps over and tackles the Death Knight only to get stabbed in the stomach for his effort, but Simon manages to shoot the Death Knight who fades away]

SIMON: "Urrgghh!!"

[Stefano drags Simon to the carpet and starts flying]

STEFANO: "You saved my life Mr. Ginseng!! Don't worry now I'll do what I can to save yours."

[Fade back to the cottage. Iolo still lies dead in the corner, Gronk is still tied to the chair and Simon still lies in a pool of blood on the cot. The door opens and Dupre, Wilfred and Stefano enter the cottage. Stefano runs to Simon while Dupre notices Iolo and runs to his body.]

DUPRE: "What in the name of Lord British has gone on here?"

SIMON: "It was Mr. Black Pearl he went nuts and cut off the goblins ear, and was going to torture him to death."

DUPRE: "What I didn't quite hear you?"

SIMON: "I said Mr. Black Pearl went nuts and was torturing the goblin."

DUPRE: "Oh, you mean this goblin?"

[Dupre whips out a lightning wand and blasts the goblin a few times]

SIMON: "It was a burn, Mr. Black Pearl was going to kill the goblin, then me, then blow your guys heads off when you came in then take off with the helm. You could have asked the goblin if you didn't just kill him."

DUPRE: "I don't buy it. It doesn't make sense."

STEFANO: "You weren't there at the Goblin village, you didn't see this psycho in action.

[Wilfred walks around the cottage and looks at the goblin]

WILFRED: He's right about the ear, its been cut off."

DUPRE: "Alright, let me get this straight. You're telling me Mr. Black Pearl was going to kill us and take off with the Helm of Courage?"

SIMON: "I swear it on all my Fawnish Ale"

DUPRE: "Let me tell you something. I've known this man for over five hundred years, and he and I have been the Avatar's companions for almost as long. In all those years Mr Black Pearl here wouldn't even steal a loaf of bread to feed a starving companion. I know I've been that starving companion and I've tried to steal loaves of bread, and all he ever said was 'Is that virtuous? Thou should not do that.' So I think you better tell me the truth about what really happened here."

[Avatar walks into the cottage]

AVATAR: "What for, it would just be more Emp droppings, this man set us up."

STEFANO: "What are you talking about?"

AVATAR: "That lump of Gwanni guano is working with the goblins."

STEFANO: "No!! this man saved me from the Death Knight, how are you so sure?"

AVATAR: "He's the only one I wasn't a hundred percent on, so I had Shamino do some checking up on him."

STEFANO: "And?..."

AVATAR: "And Fawns Female Swim team doesn't have a Gwanni as a mascot."

DUPRE: "Really, what do they have?"

AVATAR: "As it turn out they have a penguin named Hector."

WILFRED: "Why would you name a penguin Hector? I mean maybe Percy or Paula Penguin, that sounds kind of cute, but Hector Penguin?"

AVATAR: "Well there's a cute story behind it all you see...Wait a minute!!! The penguins name isn't the point, what is the point is that because of Mr. Ginseng here, Mr. Sulfurous Ash and Mr. Spider Silk are dead too."

WILFRED: "Mr. Spider Silk is dead?"

AVATAR: "Dead as the Chaos Hierophant. Now this scum is going to pay"

[Avatar pulls out a wand and prepares to shoot Simon, but Stefano pulls out a wand too and points it at the Avatar.]

STEFANO: "I won't let you do this Avatar, it isn't virtuous. I won't let you kill Mr Ginseng."

DUPRE: "Impudent snot, you dare point that wand at the Avatar."

[Dupre pulls out his own wand and points it at Stefano]

WILFRED: Come on people, we're supposed to be companions here, remember?"

DUPRE: "Mr. Garlic's right. Lets just put down the wands and go and discuss this over a few jugs of ale."

AVATAR: "NO!! This traitorous companion pays for his misdeeds now"

STEFANO: "Avatar, we've been through a lot what with the Mountains of Freedom and all, and I can tell you that Simon is no traitor. And if you do try to kill him I'll kill you"

[While all the arguing is going on Wilfred goes and hides under a pile of garbage]

DUPRE: "Well you won't be able to kill the Avatar if you're already dead by my hand will you?"

AVATAR: "That's it just let me kill this traitor and we can take the Helm and be on our way."

STEFANO: "Sorry Avatar, I can't let you do that."

[The Avatar suddenly wheels and shoots Simon with his wand, Stefano then shoots The Avatar, but is in turn shot by Dupre, but while falling down Stefano manages to shoot Dupre also.]

SIMON: "Aaagghhh..."

AVATAR: "Oh crap.."

STEFANO: "oommpphh..."

DUPRE: "Oh no not again..."

[All is quiet for a couple of moments, then Wilfred slowly rises from his hiding place]

WILFRED: "Wow, they're all dead and.. Hey I'm the only one left, that means I get the Helm of Courage. Wait ‘til everyone at home gets a load of me. I'll be a big hero back home."

[Wilfred grabs the sack that contains the Helm and runs out of the door. Stefano slowly rolls over and crawls towards Simon, who is completely drenched in blood. In the background goblin drums can be heard.]

SIMON: "Stefano, I have to tell you, me really am goblin. Me am truly sorry about this, but me thought you should know. If us survive me not let other goblins eat you. Me make sure you get to go free."

STEFANO: "Noooo, noooo, it can't be true, I stood up for you...noooo"

[Stefano slowly pulls out his wand and points it at Simon's head. While he is doing this the goblin drums outside become louder and goblin voices can be heard outside. Chief Pomdirgun enters the cottage with a dozen other goblins who raise their bows and point them at Stefano]

POMDIRGUN: Urrgh, you not kill Simon, him go home and become big hero, you let him be and maybe we no eat you."

[Stefano continues to point the wand at Simon]

POMDIRGUN: "Drop wand now you leave Simon alone!!!"

SIMON: "Me am truly sorry Stefano."

[Stefano looks anguished for a moment then finally shoots Simon. The goblins at Pomdirguns side release their arrows and Stefano falls dead.]


[The same cottage a few hours later. Most of the bodies still lie where they fell, with the exception of Stefano and Simon. Simon's body is gone and Stefano's is only a pile of chewed bones. The door opens and in walk Shamino and the Avatar.]

AVATAR: "Well it's not my fault we're so late I was busy with other important quests."

SHAMINO: "You mean your quest of chasing Frigidazzi around her bedroom? I came by three separate times and all I could hear was squealing and giggling."

AVATAR: "Well I, uhh... Ye gads look at the mess in here, I've seen charnel houses that are neater."

SHAMINO: "Looks like things went bad, and the goblins got them."

AVATAR: "Mmmm, I knew it was a good idea to hire out some companions for this caper. Hey look.."

[Avatar points to bodies of the Avatar, Iolo and Dupre, lying on the ground]

AVATAR: "Those automatons that Ensorcio and Gustacio enchanted to look like us are still holding the enchantments, wow did they do a good job."

SHAMINO: "That's what I wanted to tell you!!! Dupre and Iolo never got automatons made of themselves."


SHAMINO: "Well Dupre and Simon went out and finished off a case of Fawnish Ale, so Dupre was too hung over for his sitting and Iolo just babbled on about how he wanted to wipe up the floor with some goblin butt."

AVATAR: "So you mean these really are Iolo and Dupre?"

SHAMINO: "I'm afraid so."

AVATAR: "Well gross me out the door. I guess I'd better get out the old Hourglass. Who knows, one of them might know where the Helm is."

SHAMINO: "They might be able to tell us what happened here too."

AVATAR: "Well I'm not THAT curious. Eewww, using this hourglass just gives me the willies." 

HTML conversion by Erraticus for Dragon Press