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Old 04-29-2005, 11:13 AM   #259
Spectre of Capitalism
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: Battling evil bureaucrats at Zeta Aquilae
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Kneeling upon the grassy knoll Gateskeeper watched the defiance of Merisu and the gloating of Mogul and his minions. Pimpiowyn, putting her recent shieldmaiden training to use, tended to his wounded arm as best she could. When he was sure no one was looking Gateskeeper leaned in closer to Pimpi (too close for Vogonwe, had he been looking) and whispered, "Shhhh...don't attract attention to yourself...keep working on my arm but listen carefully, we may only have one chance to get this right." Pimpi started, looking up at the face of Gateskeeper, but then obeyed, pretending to be intent on stopping the flow of wizardly lifeblood from the handless arm while actually trying very hard not to be sick. That is until she thought what a waste of food that would be, which settled her stomach immediately.

Gateskeeper continued in a voice strained both by blood loss and dramatic emphasis, "my staff...must restart..." Pimpi nodded surrpetitiously, wondering privately if perhaps Gatesey had been taking lessons in diction from Kirkdan. "take it...and speak...words of the Great Rheeboot...after me." Pimpi feigned looking in her pack for a wound-salve or balm, simultaneously grasping the staff with her other hand. Slowly she repeated the words whispered to her by the bespectacled wizard, "klaatu barada nikto, kontrole alt deleet!" (Of course, everyone knows how hard it is to kontrole alt deleet with only one hand.) Immediately, Pimpi's staff hand began to tingle as the staff was restored to power.

"Now," he went on, "place...staff in my hand...and keep your head down." Pimpi did as she was asked and bent over the severed wrist intent on completing her work. Gateskeeper began manipulating the staff in his one hand, calling up the sound-khaard insert he'd used back at Marrow-Bones. Good, he thought to himself, the recording is still intact. With all the speed he could muster, he began composing an O-mail message.
Dear Yawanna,

Mogul is leading you on. Please listen to the attached
em-pethree. And please accept my sincere apologies for that incident at the last Velour Annual Charity Auction and Bazaar. I do hope your hair grew back out OK.

"Andy" Andotiruves

cc: Emu the Flightless
Gateskeeper then edited the recording down to the relevant parts:

"If Emu wills, I may see my beloved again someday. If not, still I will not forsake the Quest that has been entrusted to me. Begone, foul Dwimmerlaik! Go now and never come back!"

“How misguided of you to put your faith in
Him, for I am His firstborn and know His mind better than any here. You think that you will be saved by His will? He cares less for your pitiful lives than my sist/breth-ren. No, you will find no succour in Him.”

“It is by Yawanna’s will that the Ent shall be remade, and when it is, vile spirit of greed, you shall be no more.”

“Yawanna is it? You think that she will help you? Well, I’m sorry to disabuse you of that little notion, but the gullible wench thinks she is going to be my Queen. She has no intention of helping you now.”
He attached the recording to the O-mail message, withdrew his injured arm from Pimpi and whispered to her the words of omen, "duck and cover." He rose shakily to his feet, summoned up all his wizardly power, and bellowed a single word-of-command, "SEND!!". There was a blinding flash of light and a wave of power blasted out in all directions from the center which was the Gateskeeper. All who stood nearby were knocked to the ground. There followed a moment of terrible silence, broken only when Gateskeeper fell, unconscious. Followed shortly by the sound of Pimpi asking help to get out from under him.
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