Sunday, January 3, 2010

Out of the Forbidden Mist and into the Tower of Tazar, pt. 2

The Expeditionary Journal of Xarnagan Vrokk
Out of the Forbidden Mist and into the Tower of Tazar, pt. 2

previous entry found here, corresponding Algol Adventures here and here

Dickie Dee - Bone Man Intoxicant Addict and Sorcerer
Kalervo - Cactoid Fighter
Rodan the Scrounger - Zermish Man Scavenger and Fighting-Man
Thragg the Skyman - Zermish Man Ornithopter Passenger and Fighting-Man
Xarnagan Vrokk - Haasht Man Fighting-Sage


Thibodeaux and Jedediah - Earth Man alien abductees from 1850's Nevada

Return of :

Nigel Nightbringer
- Earth Man English Beefeater Fighting Man

It has been some time since I last made a moment to scribe our shared adventures. At present, I sit in the warm glow of a chemical fire, set inside a cell deep within the vaults of the Hive of Sages, my hands stained and singed by my potent particulars scattered about my workbench. Here I shall let you gather, as promised, how I came to be here. Hmm, now where did we leave off? Ah yes, that sultry sandy place, that home of strange secrets....

The Bronze Dome of the Desert loomed like a miraculous mirage in the waves of desert heat. As we approached, I ignored my parched throat and cried out to my fellow journeymen as my fascination with what could lay inside grew to a fevered pitch. My elated excitement however, was not shared by the rest of the party. They have no fear standing against hordes of mutant crow people, but knocking on the door of such a splendid dome of possible power and intrigue sends them scuffing the sand and looking away toward Jakay (which could now be seen shimmering and smoking in the distance). I was hoping that at least the Bone Man Sorcerer would have an inkling of interest in what lay beyond the portal, but nay, not a spark of enthusiasm to add to my flaming fascination. I had to make due with a cursory wander around the structure, taking note of the Elder Race glyphs that encircled it. Once again at the entrance, it's sole portal, sealed tight against the desert winds and prying eyes, I circled it with a trace of my scaled finger, secretly wishing to simply knock and enter. Another day, I sadly supposed. Rejoining my companions, the four of us set off for fabulous Jakay. It was true that we were near starving, and our tongues had not been slaked by decent saturating substance in quite some time.

Kalervo, the indomitable cactoid, led us to a safe ledge in a rocky outcropping for us to make our camp that evening; the flickering lights of Jakay tempting us in the distance as we watched the suns set. As I kept watch that night I held my breath as I spied strange grey figures scurry amongst the foothills. Curious creatures, I thought, and hopefully well fed and not interested in making a meal of a scrawny sage and his companions. As the sky lit with the glow of the three suns we quickly packed our gear, wiped the dust and grit off our faces, and made quick to Jakay. Doing our best to look presentable we strolled the streets seeking sustenance and potables which to quaff and quench our parched persons. Rodan the Scrounger, Thragg the Skyman, and Kalervo the cactoid broke from Dickie Dee and myself to head to their favorite haunt: The Bronze Engine. I chuckled at how quickly they will enter a gin soaked public house made of an old Bronze Engine but not a Bronze Dome made of Elder Race secrets! Dickie Dee and myself, still quite parched, but more thirsty for knowledge and comfort, made our way through town to the copper and turquoise Tower of Tazar the Inerlocuter.

Stepping through the ornate doorway we were greeted by the smell of incense and the smiling faces of Tazar and his counterpart, Botrub the obese sage. Before the eye-blink of a blind bat we were sitting, sipping spicy tea, and chatting merrily of our tales, trials, and tribulations. What a splendid and loquacious man, that Tazar. Soon, after many great conversational moments, Dickie Dee began to clack his jaw with his typical nervous twitch and interrupted one of Tazar's tales to excuse himself and attend Botrub at the dispensary. I could hear him quietly purchase some golden ocher lotus-nectar tea, and a single pill of Sorcerer's Silver. I was surprised at the Silver, but was expecting the purchase of the former, one of Dickie Dee's favorite intoxicants; I knew all too well what would transpire next. I turned back around, and simply snugged into my seat and sipped my tea, absorbing an all too rare moment to converse with an interesting man in such luxurious and commodious surroundings. I myself must have told a good tale or two, as before I knew it I was being invited to stay with Tazar here in this tower for as long as my sovereign felt necessary. Quite an upgrade from the Bronze Engine! The Bone Man was also extended the invitation and we stayed at the Tower of Tazar for several days, regaining our vitals and partaking of the town.

On one fortuitous outing the clever Dickie Dee discovered, on the dusty shelves of some out of the way shop, a gamma radiation pistol of the Ancients! Yes, it's radiation crystal still intact, and firing with surprising accuracy. A very propitious find!

With our strength regained, I decided our next best venture would be to mine some of the prismatic ore from the abundant source that I had located not far from the Melted City on a previous journey. Yes, on our journey toward fallen space craft we had stopped near the Melted City, oh those many moon cycles ago, with Hobab and Vroomish. It was there, while camping amongst the prismatic wastes, that I spied a near perfect seam of prismatic ore, in the open, for anyone with two hands and a pack animal to mine. I knew Tazar would pay a princely sum for such a fine specimen and it could do us well to fill our pockets with a bit more credits.

Hurrying about town I gathered together a true miner's treasure chest of tools. I marched it all over to the Bronze Engine, and happily showed it to the party, proudly proclaiming our potential princely sum. Once again I was met with low enthusiasm. Apparently they felt it was more of a necessity to go and reclaim the bodies of our fallen comrades. I happily told them that any items left on their bodies could easily be repurchased with the moneys we would earn from our mining expedition. Again, slack eyes and a lack of want. In a huff, I packed my gear together and placed it in my suite inside the Tower of Tazar. It seemed I would have to wait, yet again. However, I was followed by the still sober members of the party and they expressed that they had located some new recruits, and an old friend that showed up. Yes, apparently two oddly accented earthmen wearing equally odd clothing and claiming to be "alien abductees from a time far past" were hired on as help in this venture of reclaiming the companions. They introduced themselves as Thibodeaux and Jedediah, from the place of Nevada. Next to them stood a man in a conical hat and star patterened robe, calmly claiming to be called Ter'lec. As they moved aside I saw the familiar face of Nigel the Nightbringer, somehow not dead. Not Dead Nigel. How on Algol had he survived the Forbidden Mists to make it back here, full of gin and grinning madly? It was a pleasure to see his beefeating face again.

However it came to be, I found myself once again readying myself for a return to the pastel chalk cliffs of the mutant crow people. With my things gathered and a promise of return to Tazar, I sipped some tea and purchased a small silver pill of Sorcerer's Silver, and with a wink and a nod, turned on my heel and headed for the Bronze Engine.


  1. Ah, he's not so much a skeleton as he is a person with skin, flesh and organs that are as transparent as glass (cf. Fritz Leiber's Nehwon Ghouls).

    Later in the campaign "Skeletroopers" (reanimated skeletal soldiers) appeared, and they acted pretty much like the deadites from Army of Darkness, so they would eat, and drink, and smoke, and paw at women while cackling!