Monday, September 3, 2012

Episode 4: Adventure, Labor, and Chivalry

Episode 4:  Adventure, Labor, and Chivalry

The Landing

I woke to a beautiful morning, with Spirit Templars mingling about me watching for trouble and making my sleep all the more sweet.  A thought came to me to check the map to see if there were any grand deeds nearby that I could visit while I was in the area.  Kyara was the obvious choice.  It was also an easy walk given that there had been signs placed nearby.

My trip there was easy and relaxing.  I found a few dead animals, including a bison!  I decided to take the 50's quality hide back with me to Deliverance.  There are no Bison there.  I also made 5-6 healing covers from the body parts of several butchered animals.  I also collected some nice high-quality meat.  I could use some food.  I had not eaten since leaving, but I wanted to use the meat in a meal rather than eating it raw.  Eating raw meat will fill the belly but it drains nutrition something fierce.

Kyara was nothing like I expected.  It was breathtaking!  I had never seen such a well fortified deed.  The walls were tall and there was no visible entrance on any side.  Obviously, there was some secret mine entrance that led to the inner parts of this massive deed.  It was easy to measure.  There were guard towers at each corner of the deed.  This meant the four walls had to be at least 50 tiles wide.  It was so amazing, I decided to snapshot them so I could show Eyesgood and Theophilus.  Here are the photos I took.

Kyara on Chaos
Another view of Kyara

I spent about 20 minutes just looking around and absorbing the view of this mammoth deed.  As evening approached, I headed back to the Landing.  My stomach was aching as I realized I was approaching day three with no food.  I decided the Landing was an ideal spot to get some vital tools and equipment made for my journey.

I found a cave with a forge and iron nearby.  It was slightly off the Landing deed but close enough to yell for the guards if I needed them.  I went to the boat, pulled some tools, kindling and scrap wood and returned.    The pick axe and steel and flint I had acquired was just so appreciated as I popped some iron and placed it inside the forge.  I lit the fire and went outside to fell a tree so I could have logs to keep it lit.  First, I needed a large anvil.  Without it I could not make a frying pan to make meals.  I had to make a frying pan.  I couldn't find any clay.  My first attempt at the large anvil produced an unfinished one.  Great!  I thought.  I had no means to finish it. I had no file, no pelt, no bucket for water to temper.  I was blessed with some great tools, but not the ones I needed at the moment.  The tools could be made - I was certain of that.  But what about the pelt?  Then a thought came to me.  I took a log and from it crafted a spindle.  It was only 3 quality, but I guessed that it would do just nicely for my plan.

Leaving the cave, I headed down to the center of the Landing.  Near a large portal was a small building.  Situated on the opposite side of a window was a trader.  Hoping against all hope, I opened the trade window and scanned the left column for a pelt.  It didn't have to be high quality.  In fact, I hoped it wouldn't be.  Making my way down the list, I spotted two!  Expanding the list, 1 of them was 20 quality.  The cost:  11 iron.  Dropping the spindle, I only hoped it was enough to barter with.  It was!  In fact, the trader gave me the pelt and about 30 iron to spare!  Imagine that!  I came to Chaos with nothing but a compass and now I am jingling change in my pocket.  It was just amazing!

I returned to the cave and the iron that had converted to lumps by then.  Combining them, I made several important tools, including a hammer, a file, and a lantern!  I was really excited about the lantern because I had been mining in total darkness.  I only needed tar to fill it.  I also made a frying pan and a bucket, which allowed me to have water so that I could fashion a longsword.  The sword wasn't really needed, but in the wilderness, it makes you feel better to have a weapon, even if your skill is meager at best.  I took my lone onion and several meat and placed it in the pan.  As soon as the meal was created, I took it out of the forge so I could eat it immediately.  You never really appreciate food until you have gone a few days without it.  Wow, it tasted so good.  I filled my bucket with water and my belly as well.

I spent most of the night making tools, eating, resting, and eating more.  The sun was setting when I peered out of the cave the last time.  I returned, loaded up myself with as much as I could take and made my way down to the boat.  my stay at the landing was completely refreshing.  I had acquired just about everything I needed.

Raising my anchor, I turned the boat westward and started on my way.  A few tiles away was a rowboat I had not noticed the day before.  By habit, I examined it and what I saw almost made me flip out of my boat. I anchored quickly and studied this temptation before me.

The boat was locked and moored.  However, there was an option in the examine menu that had thrown me for a loop.  It read, Manage Settings.  Woah!  I clicked on it and I immediately had the option to allow everyone to command, everyone to board, everyone to look inside.  Once I changed the settings, I had access to the cargo hold.  I opened to a treasure trove of supplies.  Swords, veggies, iron ore, tools, armor, and even tar!  Oh, my.  I sat and stared at the list.  Some items were high quality, but others low.  Most were in low stages of decay.  However, the lock on the boat was of very good quality.  What was I to make of a boat locked with a good lock but with Manage Settings set to everyone.  It was ludicrous!   Was this a new player that didn't know any better?  Was it a skillful trap?  Was it someone who intentionally left it that way and quit?

The dilemma lasted for only a few seconds.  Greed gave way to reason and dignity.  I changed the settings once again, only this time checking friend or village on every setting.  I then closed the window and my decision was complete.  I couldn't take anything from it.  I remembered how I felt in my adventure when I "borrowed" an anchor that I coudn't return.  I wasn't about to repeat that mistake.  I reasoned it was the misfortune of an unskilled player which had left that setting so. It felt good to correct the innocent mistake.  My moral decisions at the rowboat burned what daylight I had left.  I decided to sleep once again in my rowboat next to the other one.  It had been a day of adventure, labor, and chivalry.  I slept comfortably until dawn.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Episode 3: On to the Landing

Episode 3:  On to the Landing

The crossing to Chaos was fairly uneventful.  One moment I was looking behind me, watching the coastline of Deliverance get smaller and smaller, until suddenly, it was gone.  Turning around, I gazed upon the wilderness coastline of Chaos.  It was beautiful, wild, and ominous.  I decided to head north along the coast.  I had no real agenda for this adventure except for a single goal.  I wanted to circumnavigate the entire continent.  My travels might lead me inland, I thought, but only momentarily.

I had only a compass in my inventory.  I knew I needed tools and food.  My plan was to visit every deserted settlement along the coast that felt safe to investigate.  I constantly scanned the coast line for hostile creatures both in and out of the water.  I kept my rowboat several tiles off the shore to make sure a brown bear, alligator, or other swimming creature would not be alerted to my presence.

My first stop was a cave close to the water.  Caves can be extremely dangerous, and so I faced the rowboat  northward before I set the anchor so I can quickly raise anchor and leave without having to navigate the bow of the boat.  I then disembarked and waded the three tiles to shore.  I approached the cave entrance carefully, checking my surroundings and scanning the interior hall of the cave, I peeked in.  Inside, I found two boats, a large cart, a small cart, two dead horses, and the carcass of a bison!  I smiled and thought, "And Theo tried to get me to go to Celebration to see a bison!"  I found two body parts on the bison and secured them for the chance of making healing covers later.  I exited the cave and continued northward.

I next docked near a kingdom tower.  I loved stopping at guard towers.  First, I didn't have to fear any creatures, since I could shout in local, "help" and they would immediately attack whatever tried to attack me. Second, non-aggro creatures could also be killed by targeting them and summoning the guards.  However, I would need a knife to butcher the carcass.  There was a another cave near this tower and as it happened, someone had left a rock shard at the entrance.  It was 90 percent damaged, but it would do.  All I needed to make crude tools was a rummaged iron rock.  That, along with the shard would allow me to make a crude knife.

I foraged some while watching two huge spiders who were perched many tiles above me on the hill.  My first two foraging efforts yielded branches!  This was just excellent because once I had the knife, I could make a shaft and a shovel blade for a shovel.

Leaving this second spot, I continued northward.  Suddenly, a name appeared in my local.  I had already determined in my mind that I would ask as friendly as possible in hopes that no one would find me worthy of death.  Fortunately, the person waved at me first, and so I returned the wave and continued on my way.  Further along, I came upon yet another tower, only this one was situated on a flat piece of ground that jetted out into the water.  There was an oven and large barrel nearby and a three lane road that proceeded west into the continent.  It was safe, flat, and perfect for foraging.  I found several rock facings where I was able to rummage iron rock.   I placed it in the boat and walked the westward road inland for a few dozen tiles.  I felt no real fear of doing this because of the tower guards and the flat area around the tower.

As I poked around the remains of what used to be a village, I found a small anvil in the grass.  I was excited to find one, even though it was utterly useless to me at that point in time.  I turned towards the boat and suddenly noticed three names in local.  I froze.  I then turned 360 degrees to see if I could locate them.  Peering through the trees, I caught glimpse of a white sail as it scrolled past the tower.  Three locals in a single sailboat were making their way south past my rowboat and the tower.  I waited behind a tree until they were gone.  They could have been friendly or deadly - I couldn't take a chance of them seeing me.

Once I returned to my boat, I worked with the iron rock, rock shard, and branches, eventually fashioning myself 3 crude knives and two shovels.  Also, foraging the area produced some herbs, berries, an onion, and  other necessities.  I was beginning to feel very well supplied.  But I lacked food and a means to cook.  Further investigation into a mine close by provided me with wood scraps and a single piece of kindling.  All I needed was clay!  I entered my rowboat and proceeded northward still.

it wasn't very long before I reached a landmark in Chaos, The Landing!  It was a grand place, the starter deed for Jen Kellon.  I moored my boat and looked around.  There were fifty spirit guards mingling about along with several tower guards!  What a sight it was to behold Chota statues and creatures that surrounded a huge portal in the middle of the deed.  I had never seen them before.  After much time spent walking around, I noticed on a hill a pile of items.  My decision to check that pile cannot be understated.  Reaching the pile, I looked inside and found to my amazement, a shovel, a rake, a hatchet, a saw, a pickaxe, a carving knife, and a steel and flint!  I leaped with joy at my find!  No longer did I need those crude tools!  On my way back to the boat I found a pristine wooden shield.  Equipping the shield on my left arm and the hatchet in my right hand made me feel stronger.  I decided to stay the night within the comfort and safety of the Landing.  With practically everything handed to me within a few short hours of being in this dangerous land, I felt that it was certainly the start of a wonderful journey!  As I lay in my boat that night, I could only imagine what the land would open to me on the morrow.  Truly it was an ancient and enchanted land with untold treasures awaiting anyone willing to search them out.  I wanted to be counted among that number!

Episode 2: Prelude to Chaos

Episode 2:  Prelude to Chaos

It was 3AM when Eyesgood sat up in his bed.  As usual, he couldn't sleep.  The cares of tending to Shadow Hollows coupled with the thought of SM heading out to Chaos sent his mind into seven directions.  He quietly exited the bunkhouse, trying not to wake his brothers who were sound asleep.  He heard nothing above his footsteps as he walked towards the workshop.  The night air was cold and a few snowflakes found there way to the ground midst the fog that enveloped everything.  He fired up the forge and walked over to a bulk bin to pull some iron lumps.  Placing the iron lumps into the forge, he sat down next to it and began working on a willow fishing pole.

The sun rose just as the fog began to clear.  Theophilus sat up and wiped his eyes.  Looking around, he noticed Eyesgood and Surviverman had already met the morning.  He could hear the sounds of Eyesgood smithing next door and was anxious to help pack for his brother's trip.  Stepping over to the workshop, he greeted Eyesgood and paused at the silver alter nearby.

"Good morning, Eyes."

"Good morning, lazy-bones."

"How long have you been at it?  Couldn't sleep, eh?"

"No, I couldn't.  I figured SM would want to take off early, so I improved his lantern a bit more.  The fishing rod is ready too.  Why don't you go wake him up and we can help him load up the rowboat."

"Wake him up?  He wasn't in bed."

Eyesgood turned to face Theo and said, "Really?  He was in bed when I got up at three."

"SM!  Where are you?" shouted Eyesgood.  Theo walked over to the workshop door and swung it open.  Stepping into the walkway between the workshop and the kitchen, he looked over to the village square and then right to the wheat field.

"Hey, Surviverman?  Where are you bro?"  Silence answered Theo's call.  "I wonder where he is?"

Eyesgood laid the fishing pole against the wall next to the forge.  "He's probably down at the boat.  Is the pack gone?"

Theo turned around and walked over to one of the bulk bins.  "No, he hasn't left yet.  The pack is right here. In fact, that steel and flint is sitting right here on top of it.

Eyesgood walked over to Theo.  They both stared at the pack.  Then, turning to stare at each other, they twirled around and shouted in unison, "Surviverman!"

I was glad the fog was lifting.  I anchored the rowboat and waited for my compass to settle.  It was pretty difficult to navigate in the fog.  I tried to stay as close to the shore as possible, but I lost sight of the shore and was nervous that I had rowed too far west for my northward turn up the west coast of Deliverance.  I could now see the shoreline, but the fog had temporarily confused me.

I felt really bad about sneaking off on my brothers like I did.  But I just had to.  Eyesgood would have never let me leave without my gear.  Theo would have argued me to the ground if I tried to leave with less than a month's worth of supplies.  But I had my reputation to think of.  I mean, what kind of adventure would it be if I carried all that gear Theo laid out for me?  I would be no different than... than...  Bear Grylls. I just couldn't.  Thankfully, Eyesgood working at the forge had jarred me from sleep and allowed me to hatch this plan of mine. I slipped out of bed, past Theo who is known to be a heavy sleeper, and quietly exited the bunk house.  I ducked past the window next to the forge and slowly opened the far end door to the workshop.  Sneaking through the shadows over to the pack Theo had left for me, I slipped my hand into the pack and felt around for the compass.  I then backed away slowly and closed the door.  I pointed myself towards the west gate of Shadow Hollows, and turning left, I followed the road southward as it disappeared into the night.  Reaching the shore, I waded out to the rowboat and climbed inside.  I then raised the anchor, turned the bow westward and started rowing.  It wasn't long before I lost my sense of direction.  The fog was so dense, I could only see two tiles in front of me.  Once the fog lifted, I was able to get my bearings.  I then proceeded north until I felt I was at the right spot for the crossing.  Soon, I would cross over into Chaos, the land of ancient ruins and mighty heroes.

"From what I can tell, he only took the compass.  Isn't that just like him?"

"He's an idiot!" said Eyesgood, responding without thought to Theo's investigation.  Eyesgood then noticed Theo reaching for his Vynora statue and pointing himself westward.  Motions of his hands revealed his intentions.

"How far away is he?" said Eyesgood as he turned back towards the forge.

"Just a second....  Ok, he is rather a long distance away in front of me.  I don't see any mention of his corpse."

"Wait till I get my hands on him and then you can cast Locate Soul again.  I bet you find a corpse then!" said Eyesgood.  He continued, "You know, we should have guessed he would pull something like this.  Let me calm down.  I think he will be OK.  Actually, sometimes I think we baby him a bit too much."

Theo responded, "You know how worried mother would get?  I can't help it.  Sometimes I think his sense of adventure outweighs common sense.  He's heading over to a land that is known to be hostile.  And with what?  Nothing but a compass!  it's foolish, I say, foolish!"

"I am sure he will be fine.  He did manage to save us from Elevation.  In the mean time, can you please put those veggies back into the bin and put away those medic supplies.  He's not coming back for them, to be sure.  As for me, I'm not going to waste time worrying about him."

With those words, Eyesgood returned to his work.  Theo picked up the backpack and stroked the front of it slowly.  He looked out the window and thought, "Be careful my brother.  Be careful."

Adventure 3: A Chaotic Expedition

Episode 1:  Preparations

"All I am saying is I am a little bored, that's all."

Eyesgood chimed in, "Well SM, you can always head down to the mine and pop some more shards.  Or, there's a ton of trees on the south lot that need to be turned into planks.  You know we are going to need lots of them when we start adding another floor onto the workshop.  I can't do everything around here." 

Eyesgood headed back over to the forge and stoked the fire as Theophilus walked into the workshop from the fields.  "What's going on, brothers?  Are you still talking about that addition, Eyesgood?  I know you are excited about..."

"SM is getting anxious for another adventure!"  His voice echoed from the hollow opening of the forge as he grabbed a lump of iron and started shaping it with his hammer.  "Mother sure did name him right.  He has always been the adventurer in the family."

"Hey, I can't help it," I said.  "Besides, after that last mission, I can't imagine either of you ever complaining about me not pulling my own weight.  If I hadn't plucked you guys from Elevation..."

"OK, OK,"  interrupted Theophilus.  "Look guys, we get into this little spat all too often."  Theo motioned with his right hand and I felt  the warmth of nourishment come over me from the Refresh as he continued his sermon.  "We may be triplets, but it's obvious to anyone that we all have our own personalities and goals.  Eyesgood is our blacksmith, carpenter, builder, miner, and otherwise strong-man.  I have chosen the Vynora path and enjoy my farming, animal husbandry, cooking, and spells.  SM, you enjoy taking on nature and going at it alone, surviving by your keen knowledge of the lands of Wurm and exploring to bring back word of new trade opportunities and more.  Let's just appreciate one another and work together for the good of our existence here."

"Yes, exactly!" I said as I picked up an arrow and twirled it around in my fingers.  I started to pace.  "How many times have I wanted to broaden my knowledge of the lands of Wurm only to be distracted by the duties of every day life here at Shadow Hollows?  Now, don't get me wrong, I love our home here on Deliverance.  I don't mind the work and I love being with you guys, my brothers!  But I don't know...  It's been months since I rescued you.  I just have this overwhelming desire to head out and visit some of the other lands of Wurm.  But I have no idea where I should go."

"Well," said Theo as he pressed some olives for the oil barrel Eyesgood had built in a closet near the forge, "there's the other islands:  Exodus, Celebration..."

"Chaos!"  I yelled, flinging the arrow like a throwing knife towards a bulk bin.  Eyesgood turned to glance at the arrow stuck in the bin, then huffed and returned to his work.

"No, seriously guys!  We know almost nothing about that ancient land.  Do you realize the potential of exploring that place?  It's the oldest land in Wurm.  And I hear the inhabitants are not as vicious as they once were."

There was a short pause in the conversation.  Eyesgood tempered the lantern he was making while Theo poured a bucket of olive oil into the barrel as if they half heard me.  Just then, our spirit templar walked in and excused herself as she fetched some oil from the barrel to fill the lamps located off the deed.

As she shut the door, I said, "Well?  What do you guys think of an expedition to Chaos?"

"Believe it or not, I agree," said Eyesgood, as he turned towards me from the forge with a half grin on his face.  "We need to know about those lands and what kind of trade opportunities are available to us."

He paused and looked towards the fires of the forge and recounted, "You know, I traveled there once..."

"You did not!" I said as if he had stolen my glory.  Eyesgood shook his head as he added more iron to the lantern and protested, "I did too."

Theo recounted, "Yes, I remember that.  It was a short trip, a kind of survey, wasn't it Eyes?"

Eyesgood nodded, "Yeah, I didn't spend any amount of time there.  I just wanted to head over and take a peek at the landscape.  It was a profitable trip, actually.  I managed to bring back some good supplies I had found in abandoned villages."

"Sounds amazing!  I can't wait to get started," I said as I slapped my hands together in a cowboyish sort of way.

"Wait a minute, let's get you fitted properly.  Over here, I have some armor, a great set I picked up from..."

I waved my hands in a stop motion to Eyesgood's generosity.  "Wait a second.  Now let's think about this for a moment.  Chaos is a land of warriors.  The natives are supremely gifted in that regard.  If I go over there sporting an 80q, aosp enchanted plate set, I'll just be asking for someone to kill me and steal it off my lifeless corpse."

Eyesgood stopped in his tracks, looked at me and then looked at his armor.  With a quick twirl, he turned and handed it back to Butler, one of the merchants that worked at our workshop.

"Forget that then.   We don't need to lose valuable armor!"

"I agree, Eyes.  I really think I should pack light for the trip.  In fact, I won't carry any armor at all, nor a weapon or shield!"

Theo then protested, "Ok, now, let's not be that ridiculous..."

"I'm serious, Theo.  It makes no sense to take armor and weapons.  I can outrun just about anything on foot except maybe a hell hound and a croc.  Nah, I think I can outrun them too!  My point is, I can't defend against the natives.  I can't even half defend myself against a p..."  

I stopped my sentence abruptly.  "Against what?" said Eyesgood as he stared at me for an answer.  

"Against a predator," I said hoping they did not catch the shift in my sentence.  Eyesgood went back to work at the forge as Theo dumped another bucket of olive oil into the barrel.  I let out an exhale.  I had almost revealed that awful episode on Serenity when I fought that pig.  I could never tell them about that!

"Anyway, I figure I should just pack light and use the rowboat for the trip."

"Yes, the rowboat.  I agree.  The cog is too valuable to risk being stolen and the sailboat came from chaos way back in the old days when Jen Kellon was still in existence," recounted Theo.

"You guys never told me the sailboat came from Chaos," I rebutted.

Eyesgood spoke up, his head still turned to his work, "It was called wild back then.  Our friend Kole - you remember him - he went over and brought it back just before Independence was discovered.  Now that guy is a brave adventurer!"

I remembered him.  "Yes he is!  I sure miss his visits.  It's been ages since I saw him last.  We need to get in touch with him again."

"He lives on Celebration.  Maybe you should head down that way.  I hear there are buffalo there."

"No, Theo.  My mind is made up.  I want to explore Chaos.  What do you think?  What kind of supplies should I pack?"

I started plundering through the items our two merchants carried.  Eyesgood buffed the lantern he was working on and turned towards me.

"Well, you are going to need a good lantern!"

It still glowed as he held it up and I could clearly see through the soot on his face that he was smiling.

"Thanks, bro!  I shall use it to light my way into the lands of Chaos!"  We all laughed heartily.

Theo then said, "There's no sense in rushing out.  Let's see, what are you going to need on an exploration of Chaos?"

I interrupted him with a confident boast, "I don't need anything.  But if you ask me what I would like to have, I think I would like a good fishing pole.  Since I won't be hunting animals, fish can provide me with all the nourishment I need.  Also, a few veggies from your food bin, Theo, would be very pleasant."

"Yes, I just added some 81q veggies to the food bin in the kitchen.  Let me fetch some for you."

"No wait", I said.  "Let's just think about what I will need and then we can all work to gather everything."  

"You guys gather.  I am going to finish this lantern for you," said Eyes as the steam rose from the bucket he dipped it in.

I sat on one of the bulk bins and pondered what I would need as Theo scratched down a list for me.  

Surviverman's Adventure Kit:

1 willow fishing pole
1 small barrel
1 waterskin
1 butchering knife
1 steel and flint
1 backpack 
1 compass
5kg rags
10kg cotton
30 healing covers
5kg farmers salve
1 hatchet
1 satchel of vegetables containing 75 onions and 25 garlic.
1 frying pan
1 lantern
1 long sword
1 shield

Theo handed me the list even as I was contemplating.  I took the paper and scanned over it.  

"Oh no, I can't take all of this, Theo.  First off, I don't need a waterskin, I can drink from the ocean and lakes.  I don't need a butchering knife, nor do I need a long sword or a shield..."  

Eyesgood reached in to a chest and pulled out an axe.  He grabbed the head end and pointed the handle at me.  "Here.  Take this.  You can use the axe for felling trees, chopping kindling, defending yourself from rats, pigs, and any other easy critters, and you can butcher with it.  It's lighter than the hatchet, but bigger than the small axe.  It's a great alternative."

I nodded in agreement.  "Yes, this will do nicely, brother.  Thanks!"

I continued my critique of Theo's motherly list.  "Now where was I?  Ok, I don't need the waterskin, butchering knife, long sword, shield, hatchet...   Oh, I don't need the small barrel either.  I can do with a bucket though."

Theo and I worked over the list for a while and I settled on this revised "Surviverman" version.

1 willow fishing pole
1 bucket
1 backpack 
1 compass
5kg rags
10kg cotton
30 healing covers
5kg farmers salve
1 axe
1 satchel of vegetables containing 75 onions and 25 garlic.
1 frying pan
1 lantern

Theo huffed and shoved a steel and flint in my hand.  "You need this!" he insisted.  

"No I don't.  I have learned how to make a camp fire from woodscrap and kindling."  

"And how do you suppose that you are going to get woodscrap with no knife?" Theo confidently asked.

I laughed at his lack of knowledge in wilderness survival.  "Why, my wise brother, I can use the axe to chop down two young fruit trees.  Combinding the woodscrap from those will create enough scrap to use with the kindling to make a campfire.  If I fail, the resulting scrap can be reused on more kindling."

"Well," said Theo, "the thing doesn't weigh anything!  Save yourself some trouble and just take it, why don't you!"

"Theo is right, SM.  Besides, you never know if you might need to work an oven or forge.  You will never light them without that steel and flint.  Stop being so Suriverman and just take it.  We care about you, brother.  You may be Surviverman, but you have no idea what you will face in those wild lands."

I looked down at the brand new 50q steel and flint and smiled.  "Ok, I'll take it..."  But i thought to myself, I don't have to use it!

"The hour is late.  Why don't we get some sleep and you can start packing for your trip in the morning, eh?"

"Ok, Eyes," I said as I watched Theo head over to the kitchen.  Eyesgood left as well and headed for the bunk house.  I glanced over at the forge that had just a bed of coals left in it and smiling, I exited the workshop.  Theo met me at the entrance to the bunkhouse and we entered and all jumped in our beds.  I laid there thinking what great brothers I had and what great adventure awaited me in the land of Chaos.  My last thought before drifting to sleep was the curiosity of the effects a sharp axe would have on the smooth back of a pink fat pig.