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Old 09-04-2006, 05:34 AM   #201
Anguirel
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The Lord Malfoidacil, having stashed his Map away, strolled into the next room where Angawen was looking daggers at a rather bored seeming Beauregard. Dracomir whistled jovially as he entered their presence.

"Hallo, chums. I do wonder where Hyarmenwe's got to. Most peculiar him going off with some Mordorian ambassador, isn't it? Still, stranger things have happened...as long as his professional dignity isn't compromised..."

He flashed a quick smile and tossed his head so that his scarily pale blonde hair flopped charmingly to one side.

"Still, perhaps we can do without his scruples for a bit. Any news from you lot?" he enquired, unable quite to banish an edge of disdain. "Or any sign of those Mordorian jokes calling themselves envoys?"

"None," Angawen replied almost mournfully. "The afternoon's only amusement has been kicking Beauregard."

"Or being kicked by Angawen, from my point of view," Beauregard pointed out brightly.

Still reeling slightly from the ingenuity of his Hyarmenwe/Maika accusation, Dracomir was quick to wonder...could there be potential for something here? But no, back to the daily grind of negotiating, or non-negotiating...

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Old 09-05-2006, 02:12 AM   #202
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Wandering back into the ice-cream parlour, Smilog and The Barrow Wight felt a sudden chill run down their backs. Smilog felt it more potently as the dead man had very little left of his spinal cord. Skittles looked with fire filled eyes at the dwarf, yet due to the vast amounts of ice cream she had forgotten why she had beaten him up and cast him out. However, she assumed it was for a good reason and still regarded the Dwarf with malcontent.

Just as they passed the threshold and saw Tollin licking the inside of yet another bucket of ice cream, there was the sound of footsteps coming down the corridor. Turning, Smilog saw a large number of Orcs and Uruks all carrying crossbows with mounted aiming sights. They all aimed at the Dwarf and a particularly large and smelly Uruk stepped forth and said, "Smilog the dwarf?"

"Who wants to know?" he replied, holding his axe tight in his hands.

"I am chief of police for Old Lordon town, which is where we are now," announced the Uruk a little too loudly, "you are under arrest!"

"On what charge?" demanded Smilog; "I demand to see Roggie of Morgoth about this!"

"Come on sir," said another Uruk, "don't mess us about. We've got a job to do, you know. So just come along quietly and there’ll be no trouble." Tollin got up and went to see what was going on. Unfortunately he tripped over the massive mountain of empty ice cream buckets he had built up, sending several at the Orcs. All eyes turned to him and the leading Uruk sighed.

"Looks like we'll have to take you in as well," he said, taking out some handcuffs. They began mercilessly storming into the room and Skittles couldn't help but laugh to see Smilog being carried away by an Orc only using one hand. Tollin couldn't bare the though of being thrown into that Labyrinth again, so he lifted his morning star and swung it around, knocking several Orcs out of the way. He grabbed Smilog and The Barrow Wight under an arm each and dashed out of the room and up the corridor.

Turning swiftly this way and that, Tollin found his way to a staircase, yet the Orcs and Uruks were right behind him and gaining fast. Not hesitating, the Minotaur leaped up the stairs and then through another door where he found himself in a cupboard. Swiftly he exited the broom-infested space and dashed forth with all his speed. Then he leaped out of the nearest window and fortunately landed on Sauron's Road. He began to run once again until he saw Orcs coming down the road in front of him, so he turned but more Orcs were coming the other way and from down below. He looked up in dismay to see Uruks riding strange birds coming from above and with many cross bows all aimed at them.

Smilog looked around as Tollin put him down. There seemed to be no escape. All their luck had run out. The Barrow Wight whimpered and searched longingly for his pipe. Smilog stood there surrounded by Orcs and Uruks and turned to Tollin, whispering, "Hang on, I've got an idea..."

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Old 09-05-2006, 11:23 AM   #203
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And so it was that the day had ended, the save had been filled, and the author had been mysteriously logged off between typing and hitting post, and so the post was lost to the depths of cyberspace.

Within it were many puns, one pertaining to the tense of the word 'thought', and it involved Alli Umfuil reading parts of Malfoidacil's slanderous letter aloud.

She and Roggie argued and tabloids wrote about it. Smilog and company disappeared from Alli's radar (well, you know... her Middle Earthian equivilant of a radar... she didn't really have a radar... I was just using that as an example, ya know?) and probably had a bit of cliff-hanging adventure. Maika and Hyarmenwe were officially repremanded and their responses were left ambiguous so that their own writers could fill in the blank spots of the narration.

A few other people did a few other things, and it was written in such a way that if it had actually posted like it should have, the world would be at peace, the ozone would fix itself, teddy bears would go on picnic, turn gummi, and start dancing to various locations that rhyme, and pigs would fly through a chilly underworld.

A week flew by in an amazing narratorial blur and it ended in such a scene that the sky was darkening. It was that shade of evening wherein you can't see the deer no matter if you're using high or low beams, and all you succeed in doing is blinding other drivers that can't really see either, because the air turns opaque, the sky is pinkish, everything is really weird looking, and shadows don't seem to exist, except within your own eyes.

And so the night began...

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Old 09-05-2006, 03:45 PM   #204
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The Wolf Makes A Kill

It has long been a point of contention among scholars why, exactly, formerly tranquil, pitch-black, stony corridors start echoing to tacky horror-music when something unfriendly is crawling down them. Some hold that it is an evolutionary response developed by castle walls in the Jurassic Period. Others put it down to a quirk of Romanian architecture. But on one fact all are agreed. The path of the Werewolf is always heralded by bastardised Strauss.

So it was on this particular dark watch of the night. Few heard the ominous strains of music in the Castle of Roggie, due to the majestic snoring of the Orc garrison. But there are some who always have ears to here*.

A figure in a grey cloak and hood flung itself to the ground, hollowing a hand round one alert ear. Then the Ranger-for it was he-rose to his feet with a stern expression.

"Gaurhoth," he spat, and drew his sword, a venerable weapon crafted by Petty-Dwarves to be the bane of mosquitoes. A rather suave growl from behind him answered his challenge, and he spun round in a fluid motion.

"Go back to the Shadow!" the Ranger cried. "You cannot take your prey tonight, Hound of Sauron. I am defending her."

"Oh, yes?" the fell spirit replied smoothly. "Think again, Ranger. It is you I have come for this eve."

The valiant Dunadan raised his sword in formal challenge.

"You shall ne'er defeat the grandson of Aradorable and son of Aramazing..."

The wolf sprang, a ray of moonlight illuminating its pale silver fur. The fabled sword of the hero bent and snapped, and the creature of the night lunged for the throat, and feasted.

"The prophecy is fulfilled, Aracannonfodder son of Aramazing," it commented. "You would indeed have tasted better with salt. No matter. The ambassadors are defenceless now!"

Loping to a window, the werewolf cast back its head and began to howl, rhythmically, in tune with the horror music...

*This typo has been left intentionally to suit the whims of the poster, the writer, and everybody that's wondering what the heck is happening.
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Old 09-07-2006, 09:08 AM   #205
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The ambassadors awoke late the next morning, every last one of them, regardless of regular sleeping habits. Their nightly dreams had been interrupted by screams and howls, and though they attributed these sounds to the assassination of Smilog and Co., they were happily disproved early on when they all reached a comfortable seating area set up for their benefit.

As they sat over tea, coffee, whiskey, and whatever else they could find, nibbling crumpets far before tea time and blinking the sleep from their eyes, conversation (which had amazingly started at all!) turned to the events of the night before.

"Why has Lady Alli not arrived to inform us of last night's happenings?" one diplomat asked irritably. Why indeed.

"Doesn't... isn't... I don't know." another started and ended lamely.

"But what sort of creatures howl with such an incredible musical crescendo to back them?" asked another.

"Shouldn't we be... um... working?" added yet another, tentatively.

"No!" came a resounding reply. "We cannot be expected to work properly with our rest so rudely interrupted, and without even an explanation for it."

"So... we're taking the day off?"
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Old 09-07-2006, 06:57 PM   #206
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"So... we're taking the day off?"

"And good riddance that we are," muttered Hyarmenwë under his breath. He narrowed his glance at his fellow Gondorian diplomats- Dracomir in particular. There had been some harsh words in private council over the past week, and there had been little in the way of unity or working together since, but more of a mutual backstabbing- fortunately paralleled among the Mordorians, who through no fault of their own were completely incapable of presenting a united front on any matter. Hyarmenwë was of the opinion that Gondor and Mordor would probably be more likely if he and Maika sat down and hammered something out, without the "assistance" of their confreres, regardless of what certain loose tongues might make of it.

And, indeed regardless of what certain tongues might make of it, Hyarmenwë had every intention of spending the day with Maikaelwen. Though there was no indication that the Gondorians' visit to Mordor was EVER going to end, it seemed prudent to begin searching for his lost daughter immediately, a free day having presented itself.

According a note delivered quietly to his room late the night before, Maika had been busy with some research, and possibly had a lead or two. Hyarmenwë didn't dwell on what strange manners or devices the research may have entailed, and simply made ready to meet her at their predetermined meeting place: the laundry room.

Asking directions from one of the Orkish staff (a fact Hyarmenwë was reluctantly becoming accustomed to. If nothing else, the Orks were more canonical than most of humans in Mordor), Hyarmenwë found his way to a strange room full of washing machines, driers, ironing boards, and extra-strength bleach. Maika was apparently not so eager to escape the council chambers as he had been (well, he considered, he had pretty much left as soon as it was clear that they weren't going to be negotiating. A bit rude, perhaps- but nothing more than Angawen, Bearugard, and especially Dracomir deserved. As for the Mordorians, he doubted if they noted the difference, other than Maika).

However, it was quite clear that Hyarmenwë was not alone in the room. A tall, almost inhumanly handsome, man stood next to one of the washing machines, unloading a sack of blood- sweat- and dirt-stained cloaks and travelling clothes into it's basin. Hyarmenwë thought that the man might be Elvish, as he was cleanshaven- not to mention the whole handsome bit already noted.

The maybe-Elf had long, flowing black hair, brilliant blue eyes with a steely glint, and well-tanned, well-muscled neck and arms. He appeared like a tightened bowstring, ready to spring into action as soon as needed. Even in a task so mundane as loading a washing machine, the Maybe-Elf looked fluid, and graceful as a cat. The long, silver-hilted sword at his side looked not so much an encumberment as an ornament- and a tool ready to be used.

Even as Hyarmenwë digested the syrupy awesomeness of the stranger, he sensed the older man's presence, and fluidly turned around.

"Hail and well met!" he said, bowing ever so gracefully. "I am Elrogorn, son of Elrohir, and Chief of the Rangers of Mordor."

Hyarmenwë's jaw dropped. He found himself unable to summon even a modicum of his normal dignity.

"By the White Tree..." he breathed. "What level of anakronism are you?
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Old 09-07-2006, 07:14 PM   #207
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White Tree

This is just what I need Bearugard thought to himself. I just get better from being bed ridden and now I have a whole day off of doing absolutely nothing. It's not like I've been doing anything important anyway. I just sit locked up with Angaewen all day long. I mean no disrespect to her, I mean Angaewen is a fine lady, but for pete's sake I just have to do something.

That's when Bearugard began contemplating what Malfoidacil came in and said last night. And he began bitterly muttering to himself, "I was chosen to come to Mordor too. I was picked. Without me, none of these other diplomats would have gotten anywhere. Sure I've been under the weather and inactive, but it's just this God forsaken place and all it's anakronisms. Hyarmenwe goes on and on about us having to stick together and all we got in this place is eachother, then he goes off with unknown Mordorian dirt. Hmmph, forget about Hyarmenwe."

And suddenly Bearugards tone changed, "But you made a promise, didn't you? Eh, a promise. A promise to one of the most respected diplomats in all of Gondor. If anyone knows what he's doing it's him. Don't worry, Hyarmenwe will look after us, I know he will."

"Is everything allright?" as Angaewen looked at him with a troubled face.

Bearugard rubbed his eyes, and regathered himself, "Yes, I'm fine. I don't think I'm fully recovered from that food poisoning yet. I'll be fine!"

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Old 09-07-2006, 07:45 PM   #208
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Anakron and Panakeia had had a week to remember. They had been to every spot in Lûndûn worthy of visiting, and some not so worthy. They had of course taken in Wednester Shabby (in honor of Wednesdays, apparently), Why Chopple (to which every tourist cracked, predictably, 'why not'? - - leaving Anakron and Panakeia with the unenviable ailment of rolling eye syndrome), Traffic Grrr Square (which seemed decidedly aptly named), Sent Pall's Catty Droll (there were a lot of Catty Drolls sprinkled throughout Nurnia, and Anakron had never bothered to wonder why. He did so now, aloud).

"What are these Catty Drolls and what makes them so fascinating to the average tourist?"

"Maybe it has something to do with the Siamese Cat on top of that old staff you used to carry."

"Don't remind me."

Last but not least, they visited the Tar of Lûndûn with its Gollum's Gate and Orc torture devices (torturing orcs was apparently an art form unto itself). They saw the Spleen's Crown Jools, and were in abject wonderment that the Spleen's family of Windsurf could have got off so well. They were told by the dowty Beefeaters that the family did not really windsurf at all, having come by the name because of the Cat's Howl where they lived.

Cat's Howl? Anakron wondered, but gave up trying to understand these blasted anakronisms. None of it mattered with Panakeia on his arm.
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Old 09-08-2006, 12:22 AM   #209
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Dracomir's Detour

The moment the "day off" was declared, the diplomats began to disperse, some looking rather thankful for the opportunity of escaping each other's company presented so early. But the Lord Dracomir Malfoidacil was not such a one. He stayed at his seat, watching the unravelling of the party through his chilly eyes, which at last settled on none other than Skittles, Warlordess of Mordor.

"Hello again," he remarked, in almost friendly tones, as he rose from his chair in a languid motion. "Sleep well?"

"A Warlordess should be sleepless," Skittles answered loftily.

"Well, that can't have been very difficult last night. You're King Roggie's Warlordess. Surely you know something of what went on?"

"I could kill you," she said, "but then I'd have to tell you."

"I see," Dracomir murmured. "It would have been a real scandal, after all, if the King of Mordor hadn't told his Warlordess what the cause of the mysterious howling and screaming one dark night was. Particularly if, say, some Gondorian ambassador then marched off and discovered the secret before she did. If she really didn't know what had happened, she'd evidently have to go with him to make sure he didn't sabotage state confidences. But obviously you know already, so the situation doesn't arise. Now I'm off to do some detective work. See you later."

Tom produced his finest trademark thin smile, and started off down one corridor. Some minutes passed before a knife flew through the air and sliced a few of his hairs off above the ear.

"Obviously," a satisfied voice reeled off, "it would be a real scandal if some ignorant know-it-all Gondorian ambassador were allowed to go wandering round a castle interfering with things, when he could be under the close custody of the Warlordess and Oak Tree Paramount of Mordor!"

Dracomir turned and was not that surprised at what he saw. Skittles was coming, she was shadowed by her cat, and she was wearing leather...

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Old 09-08-2006, 03:35 AM   #210
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"Wow," said The Barrow Wight as he removed his duck costume, "that was a daring escape!" Tollin and Smilog sat down in the shadow of Small Jim and peered at Mount Zoom, still standing still. For a stupid and really worn out joke, it seemed to have evaded destruction so far.

"Well," mused Smilog as he rose once again, stroking his beard, "burning the Golden Fleece and finding the purple piper were the hard parts, after that, the rest was easy!" Their daring escape from the police and their many other adventures had quite left them worn out.

Smilog had quite forgotten about any negotiations that may or may not have been going on inside the Mountain. The Ice-cream parlour had made his memory a bit of a blur, not to mention being chased by a Balrug* down a corridor of fossilised shoes. Yet now they were about a mile away from Mount Zoom and under the strange building that contained Small Jim; the great Bell of Mordor that had once rung in Cirath Ungol as a warning and now sat atop this magnificent tower to tone the hour.

Tollin opened the door leading into the building and said, "Do you think we should investigate this?" Smilog shrugged and sat down again.

"If you wish," he grunted, "I doubt you will find anything interesting, though. As I said, I commissioned this thing, if there were any plot hidden here by the blue wizards, I'd know about it."

"You didn't know about the Balrug," said The Barrow Wight, "when you clamed to know those tunnels like the back of your hand."

"Oh very well," sighed the Dwarf, "let us see what is in this tower."


*A strange creature of carpet and dust. It seemed to be man sized, but slightly bigger. The Carpeted skin seemed to be shrouded in dust. The one detail he was not sure of was when the dust about it had stretched forth like two vast wings...

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Old 09-08-2006, 10:29 AM   #211
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Igor was beginning to wonder if they would ever even begin negotiations, let alone finish them. It seemed that they had another day to themselves and, still feeling sick from the day before, he decided that he would try not to spend it with Skittles. The madness that followed her around was catching and definitely not conducive to any form of well being.

He rolled his eyes, and then spent the next thirty seconds or so waiting for one to stop. Once in control of his body again he took it out of the door, and headed to one of the balconies that were dotted all around the moving mountain. He had asked one of the orcs why the balconies had been built as not many people really used them, not wanting to stick their head out into the filthy air of Mordor.

"Forthooth, if came a gutht that lifted on high a body that thtanding there wath, why they would die and thith would Roggie pleathe." One had replied, speaking such a garbled mixture of old English, Yoda talk and natural orc speech that it had taken Igor several minutes to translate it, and even once he had he didn't entirely understand.

"Like, assasination? Why don't you simply throw them off the top?

The orc had given him a shocked and wounded look.

"Like common murdererth? Thame on you for thinking tho." And he (or possibly she, the long flowing hair was giving Igor some difficulty in deciding) stalked off in disgust.

Leaning over the balcony now, though keeping a tight grip on it just in case, Igor sighed and wondered just how many more mishaps would occur today. He was quite impressed that the whole team of negotiators was still alive and wondered if the stories about Alli being on speaking terms with Illuvatar was giving them this level of luck.

Speaking of Alli, he thought it strange that they hadn't seen anything of her that morning. She had never not given them instructions or at least guidelines before, and the noises from the night certainly needed some explaining. Perhaps she was still dealing with the aftermath of whatever had happened.

Sighing again he cocked his ear, the other still being in the Gondorian's chambers where he'd left it, and listened out for any explosions that might mean he was needed.
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Old 09-08-2006, 10:34 PM   #212
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"By the White Tree..." he breathed. "What level of anakronism are you?"

Elrogorn frowned slightly, and although he was clearly disappointed, it was with an air of resignation and curiosity, and no ill-will borne at all.

"Then you guess something of me?" he asked Hyarmenwë.

"If by 'son of Elrohir', you mean son of THE Elrohir..." said Hyarmenwë, "then I am rather confused as to why you are here in Mordor."

"Ah," said Elrogorn, catching on, "but I am a bit more than just the renowned son of Elrohir."

"Don't you mean the son of the renowned Elrohir?" interjected Hyarmenwë.

"No, no, I am quite renowned myself," replied Elrogorn, but with such a matter-of-factness that it was clear he was not boasting. "At least, I am in Mordor. In Gondor all memory of me has likely been erased. And for good reason! For I was not Assigned to Mordor out of political expediency, as was Mardil II, but out of genuine anakronistic tendencies."

Hyarmenwë must have looked completely baffled, because Elrogorn continued.

"You see, my mother was a half-Elf of Arnor. Her mother was the niece of Glorfindel, and her father was Halbarad of the Rangers' uncle. She was a great warrior princess- the tenth walker of the Fellowship of the Ring- I'm sure you've heard of her. She and my father fell in love when she helped their mutual friend and relative Aragorn through the Paths of the Dead. I was born ten years after the War of the Ring, and was fostered, after my formative years, by Legolas in Ithilien."

Hyarmenwë's mouth was hanging open, with the rest of him completely unaware of the fact. Was Elrogorn mad, he wondered? Surely, such an absurd tale could never have occured! A tenth walker...

But Elrogorn was continuing.

"When Mordor began to receive Assignees... well, my mother and I were among the very first batch Assigned. Perhaps it was deserved. Scholarly research does seem to indicate that we were somewhat uncanonical. And my father, having departed to Valinor in a most peculiar and romantically touching manner- a sundering of all the ages! Well, anyway, my mother was in a 'whatever comes will come' sort of mood, and so didn't use her lethal martial arts skills to prevent her Assignment. I went along as a dutiful son."

Hyarmenwë's only thought was that someone as crazy as this DESERVED to be in Mordor.

"Alas! Among those others in that original Assignment to Mordor was a dreaded pack of Wereducks. The foul fiends are like nothing you Now-Free-From-Wereduck Gondorians can imagine! Vicious enemies and brutal creatures! They'll stop at nothing. Their only goals are death, destruction, and the occasional playing of the Stockmarket.

"To make a long story somewhat less long, they decided on making a light snack of my mother. Though she took down fifteen of their number in her final battle, she succumbed in the end to their attacks, and I arrived only in time to drive them from her mutilated body, and give her proper burial. I have since sworn to kill every Wereduck that I may, and to ensure that none other dies as my mother did. In pursuit of this, I have become, in addition to the greatest warrior of the age, a hardened ranger, capable of reading all tracks, of surviving in all conditions, and have developed the meanest Poker Face you'll ever see."

Hyarmenwë didn't have a clue how to respond to anything the "Half-Elf" was saying. So he changed topics.

"And... erm... what are you doing in here?" he asked, gesturing at the washing machines and the like.

"Well, being a Ranger and Wereduck hunter is dirty work," said Elrogorn, matter of factly. "So I'm here to wash my things. Duck blood gets in everywhere. WAIT!" Elrogorn dashed to beside the door, and swiftly drew his sword. "I hear something!"

The door opened. Elrogorn whirled around to see...

Maika.

Deftly as if he hadn't been about to cut her head off, Elrogorn sheathed his sword, and held the door steady. Maika gave him a weird look- entirely justified, in Hyarmenwë's opinion- and proceeded to ignore him.

"Sorry I'm late," she said. "Unlike you, I tried not to be rude when I left."
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Old 09-09-2006, 12:38 AM   #213
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Something to do with Ang's post, I would imagine.
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Old 09-09-2006, 09:48 AM   #214
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In which the grand tour of Lûndûn is continued.
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Old 09-09-2006, 10:07 AM   #215
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Something to do with Audrey's post that's something to do with mine
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Old 09-09-2006, 10:20 AM   #216
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something to do with Blue Istari, a staff, hat, and cloak...
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Old 09-09-2006, 11:02 AM   #217
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Because Igor thought this looked like fun and didn't have anything better to do.
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Old 09-10-2006, 12:09 AM   #218
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SAVE - because we simply have to beat ATM (I) at something.

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Old 09-10-2006, 09:40 AM   #219
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In which all preceding saves become permanent fixtures to the story. See ATM1 for details.
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Old 09-10-2006, 08:18 PM   #220
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An odd sense of foreboding came over Panakeia as she stepped into Can Sing To Guard Inns with Anakron, much as it had many times over the past week, sending prickles along her spine. She swept it away to a distant dustbin of doubting, locked in the lockbox of her mind, where she had banished the previous disturbances. Silly. Unreasonable. The week had gone perfectly. It was, in fact, the best week of Panakeia's life.

That simple truth was the reason behind Panakeia's nervousness. All good things must come to an end. The maxim had been etched into Panakeia's mind by hard experience. Good things did invariably, dramatically, and permanently come to a terrible end. Her fairy tale childhood had come to ruins. Why should this fairy tale romance end in happily ever after? Now that a happy ending seemed almost complete, Panakeia felt more reason than ever to fear that it would be snatched away.

But for now, fear and worry were forgotten, and Panakeia walked with Anakron along the paths of the Guard Inns, wondering aloud why there were no guards or Inns to be found. Both laughed and shook their heads at the absurdities of Mordor's anakronisms and wandered down a tree-lined lane, completely unaware of the doom that was soon to meet them.
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Old 09-11-2006, 07:25 PM   #221
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Sooner than one would have thought.

Anakron and Panakeia had thoroughly enjoyed the dogs of Can Sing To Guard Inns, and Anakron wondered if the howling and barking of the happy dogs was supposed to be the singing, and their owners the guards. Probably not, but the sheer variety of breeds of dog was a wonder. Not every anakronism was a bad thing.

Now they were strolling along the water's edge, watching the cormorants, moor hens, and other birdlife, and were come to the Eat all yen fountains at the far end of the Guard Inns, where stood an ornate yellowish building that that graced the far end of the fountain pools. The pair made their way to the square building to rest under its shade. Just as they were making to sit down before it, Anakron spied a swish of blue in one of the openings. He went to look.

There, leaning against the wall, was his staff, hat, and cloak. Just inside the building was Pallando, the Blue Istari. Anakron's teeth ground.

"Where's your other half?" Anakron grated.

"Otherwise occupied."

"What's this?" he nodded at the staff, hat, and cloak.

"Do not think that merely throwing them into a firey furnace ends your role. The powers of the anakronism dweomer do not lie in this staff or the paraphernalia you've added to them. That power lies with us, and we convey it to you. It has not stopped being yours. You are still the Grand Anakronist. Stop dallying and do your job."

Panakeia had come to his side. "What's going on, Anakron?" Her voice sounded anxious, as if she guessed what was wrong. "Oh! You!" Her hands came up protectively to Anakron's shoulders.

He looked down at her. Her face was full of fear. She was right to fear.

"You had better leave me, dearest, before something bad happens."

He turned back to the Blue Wizard, but he was not there. Only the staff, hat, and cloak were.

"Just leave them there! Let's leave Mordor!" Panakeia said.

"Do you really thing that's possible, Panakeia? Do you?"
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Old 09-12-2006, 04:32 AM   #222
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The handsome stranger, still holding the door open, continued to stare at Maika as though she had just stepped out of a dreamy fairy tale. His mouth dropped open in an impossibly cute way, but Maika did not care. She had eyes only for the other man in the laundry room.

"There seems to be something strangely different about you today, my lady," said Hyarmenwë, his eyes narrowed and his head tilted in an effort to figure out what it was.

"You noticed?" Maika bowed slightly, letting her hair fall from behind her shoulder to hide her pale pink cheeks. "They were, uh, broken, and I currently have no time to look for another pair..."

"I must say it makes you look a few years younger."

Maika's face snapped up towards Hyarmenwë. She thought she must have been glaring at him, because he proceeded to apologise for the comment.

"Forget it," she interrupted, waving a dismissive hand. They had to stop talking about age, and fast. "So, are you ready?"

"I rather doubt, Lady Maika, that I would be here if I wasn't," came Hyarmenwë's confident reply, but Maika knew better; she could see that he looked worried. Better let him worry about anakronisms, she thought. It's a healthy fear that would keep him safe.

"If you say so. Now, then, shall we?"

Maika stepped out into the hallway, the handsome stranger still standing where he was, and heard the door click shut behind her. She walked ahead, her hair swaying softly behind her. She felt comfortably light without the usual bun weighing her down, and it was evident in the hint of a skip in her stride. Unless the skip had another purpose for its existence that she did not know.

"Where are we headed?" The Gondorian seemed less scared now. Maika smiled, inwardly of course, at his show of bravery.

"For now, the wardrobe. I've arranged our transportation, and it's waiting for us there."

"Surely it's not--"

"Unless you'd rather walk, in which you're more likely to have a lengthy encounter with anakronisms. I don't mind walking."

Maika turned momentarily to Hyarmenwë, who now walked beside her.

"Strange though it sounds for a Gondorian to say it...I trust you, Lady Maika."

"As you should," she curtly replied. They halted in front of the now-familiar wardrobe. There was no sign of the old man they had previously met in sight. Maika thought, amused, that he had been so mistaken then.

"You know the drill," she told Hyarmenwë, and went in. He followed after her, keeping the door unnoticeably, except for the light from outside, open, as he did the last time. Again they stepped into Nurnia, which looked as it did when they first got there: the same field of grain, the same meandering stream from the same distant mountains. But there were new additions: two not-so-strange things, in the form of two shabby, obviously poorly kept, horses.

"I'm sorry," said Maika, "but these are the best I can find. Nobody rides on these in Mordor anymore."

"Fret not, my lady, I can make do with them," responded Hyarmenwë graciously as he approached the horses, and proceeded to stroke the dirty dark brown mane of one. "I'm even surprised you still have horses here with all the...anakronisms..."

Maika walked over to Hyarmenwë. Her long dark hair was flying, now behind her, now covering her face, in the gentle breeze. "They weren't easy to find, but a woman of position has her perks," she said shrugging, and gracefully mounted the other, dirty white, horse. Hyarmenwë followed suit on his.

"Before we leave," he said, "would you mind telling me our next destination?"

"I don't know if you'll believe me if I tell you, but here it is. Somewhere in Mordor lies a strange inn. At least it is strange for us, but for you it would certainly look ordinary. An oasis of rationality, you might even call it."

Hyarmenwë looked at Maika, surprised.

"I knew you would react like that."

"No, my lady, it's just that I have been in such a place before; Lady Alli had brought us Gondorians - apart from Dracomir, that is - there, over a fortnight ago."

Dracomir. Maika frowned ever so slightly at the name. That dirty little...no, she thought, catching herself. Now's not the time.

"Then it must be the same place, because I'm sure no other one exists in this land. That's very good. Now, let us be off."

And off rode the two ambassadors, one glad to be back in his element, the other awkward in the unfamiliar mode of transport, both oblivious to the light footsteps on their trail.

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Old 09-12-2006, 06:12 PM   #223
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Hyarmenwë and Maika had been travelling for a good hour when a rather attention-demanding cough caused them to turn around. Hyarmenwë, who had been thinking that his sorry nag might not be so sorry if it had a proper grooming, and had been thinking of various ways to go about it, was surprised indeed to see that strange, anakronistic... half-elf person from the laundry room trailing them.

"I beg your pardon, good elder," he addressed Hyarmenwë, "but you've got my handkerchief." He pointed at Hyarmenwë's boot where, indeed, a very dirty, blood-stained handkerchief was stuck. The blood, which had been damp and sticky back in the laundry room had dried, bonding the handkerchief to his boot. With a tug, Hyarmenwë ripped it up, and dourly handed it to Elrogorn.

"Is there any particular reason why you waited a good hour before speaking up?" asked Maika. "I assume you've been following us the whole time?"

"Yes, I've been following," said Elrogorn, "but it took me until now to catch up."

"Why didn't you stop me before I left that... room... or in the halls?" asked Hyarmenwë.

"You were talking," said Elrogorn, as if it were really quite simple. "Far be it from me to rudely interrupt so intriguing a conversation my mundane request for a dirty handkerchief."

"And then, once you had shaken yourself out of this politeness, you followed us on foot for an hour, rather than just shouting and catching our attention?" Maika asked.

"Pretty much, yes," said Elrogorn, flashing her a smile that said he had planned it that way.

"Hold on..." said Hyarmenwë. "These are a couple of sorry nags, but they aren't that slow. You caught up to us on foot? You aren't even out of breath! You're as fresh as a garden vegetable!"

"Why, thank you," said Elrogorn, with a smooth bow. "But I can move quickly when I need to. It runs in the family, really. My uncle Aragorn was known as 'Strider', you know, and my mother's godfather, Tom Bombadil, was well-able to keep pace with hobbits riding ponies, and my legs are much longer than his."

"I still think a wise man would have shouted us down a good fifty-nine minutes ago," interjected Maika. "Why didn't you?"

"Having heard your conversation, my curiosity was piqued," said Elrogorn. "I know the tavern you travel to quite well. As nephew of the great King Elessar, I'm something of the Bonnie Prince Charlie of Mordor- minus the legitimate claim, of course. Though I don't know that the Gondmordorians are really of a Jacobite bent. In any case, as a someone who knows the dangers of Wereducks in the Wild, and having sworn to let none fall to their bills, it is only appropriate that I join the two of you on your journey, and not leave you to their dastardly clutches."

"So, basically, you didn't say anything so that we'd have to let you join us?" said Maika.

"Yes, pretty much," agreed the part-Elf. "I am Elrogorn, son of Elrohir, and if by life or death or something uncanonical I can protect you, I will. You have my sword, and my bow, and my dagger, and my Swiss Army Knife."

Neither Maika or Hyarmenwë said a word, but simply spurred their horses into continuing on, while Elrogorn followed at a trot behind them.
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Old 09-13-2006, 02:30 AM   #224
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Although there were many winding stairs covered in a great many different kinds of slime, Smilog and his party soon came to the top of the Tower of Small Jim. They ere in a large square room, ten foot high the walls and the ceiling was up held by many thin pillars. On each wall they could see, dimly, the outline of great clock faces, each with a sword painted on them with yellow writing above; yet what the writing said, none could tell, for it was blurred and in a foreign language. "Kids," muttered Smilog, "always graffiti-ing our stuff."

Tollin examined the centre of the room, where there were, suspended three foot off the ground, four large bells, surrounding a larger bell made of brass and steel. All about them was the loudly echoed sound of ticking and the creaking of floorboards whenever they moved. There seemed nothing particularly odd about the place, bar the small group of rats in the corner who appeared to be dressed as 16th Century English aristocrats and drinking gallons of tea.

"I say," Shouted the Barrow Wight as he inspected the clock face closely, "I recognise this."

"You do?" said Smilog, turning suddenly and nearly falling over in the process.

"Yes, quite plainly," the dead man took out a monocle and peered at the face even closer, "it was several years ago when me and some other Wights came here and decided to leave a little message of our own. It simply reads 'The Barrow Downs' those were good times." Smilog resisted the urge to punch the Wight.

"Look at this," said Tollin noticing a part of the floor that appeared to have been recently cut out and replaced. "I think I can open it," continued the Minotaur, "shall I?" Smilog nodded and Tollin lifted the floorboards. Then, several things happened; a horse sneezed, a rat leaped out of the floor and bit The Barrow Wight on the ear, Smilog slipped and smashed through the floor, and Tollin saw a small book in the hole being carried down by gravity, just above Smilog.

There was some crashing and banging before a silence grew once again. "Good grief," said the Barrow Wight, "Smilog, I say!" he cried down the hole, there were some groans from the deeps, "You seem to have fallen down a thirty foot hole."

"I think he knows that," pointed out Tollin, "can you move." Smilog swore at them and muttered something about getting back up if he had to grow wings. "There was a book!" cried Tollin, "can you see it?" there was some muffled cursing and sounds of movement.

"Yes. I have it!" came Smilog's reply.

"What does it say, old bean?" asked The Barrow Wight, taking his pipe out and lighting it.

"It says, 'get me out of here you stupid rotting corpse!'" Smilog threw a rock up, but it did not even get close to the top, but came back down and obviously his him on the head. Tollin rose and stroked his chin, trying to think of a plan.

All of a sudden, the ceiling collapsed and a large figured clothed in an orange robe fell to the floor and then rose up again, gripping a large metal staff. It appeared to be a man, tall and blond with a short stubble and long hair that his threw back. He smiled widely and showed a set of ridiculously white teeth. "Sorry I'm late," he said in an agonisingly arrogant voice, "did I miss anything? I bet you're all glad to see me at last, eh beardy!" he grabbed Tollin and head butted him, "we're all real men here!"

"I'm sorry," said The Barrow Wight, putting his pipe out, "Who are you?" the man punched the Wight in the face and laughed.

"Me?" he laughed, "Who am I? Who am I?"

"Yes, that's what I asked," said The Wight after putting his head back on.

"I'm Flashalim, the fabled orange wizard of the south!" he announced, "you can call me 'Flash'!" he winked and said, "I had some terrible business to sort out back west, but now I'm here to sort out the so-called dark Lord and then take all his birds! Woof!"

The Barrow Wight stared, almost feeling sick. "I don't think they get many in Mordor. The air is too poisonous for them to fly." Flash looked at him for an awful second, then he threw his head back and laughed.

"You're a funny fellow!" he cried, "Now! Let’s get kicking some Sauron backside! And then, to Gondor! Woof!"

After explaining to Flash many times that he was a little late for the war with Sauron, Tollin eventually got around to asking him to help get Smilog out of the hole. "Well," said Flash, standing up and throwing his hair back, "I've got just the spell for this!

Two hours later, Smilog and the rest stood at the bottom of Mount Zoom, peering at the devastated remains of Small Jim. Flash was next to him, covered from head to tow in soot and brick remnant. "Well, wasn't that fantastic?" cried Flash, "Now, it was bucko seeing you ladies, but I've got a Middle Earth to save!" a mysterious rope appeared from no where from the sky. Flash grabbed it and swung off shouting "Woof!"

"I do hope he gets eaten," said Smilog as he watched the 'wizard' fly of towards the homes of the wild Wargs.

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Old 09-13-2006, 01:43 PM   #225
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Alli slipped through shadows like it was her job, glaring at the sun for being out and making what action should look impressive and mysterious simply start looking a little creepy. She straightened up and walked normally, her stride long, and her cape (yes, she was wearing a cape... she found it covered her stash of weaponry very tidily) billowed like Batman's frequently did.

She had a lot on her mind, to say the least. Most of it would be transcribed as gibberish, sort of like aoig haorlighw ionawerewolfaweoihg aAimèmmvvvve rrrrIllamatar!!! fjaoi.

She was not entirely sure in which direction she walked... she didn't really care. But she needed information, and she needed a Vision. She'd had no dreams in days; she'd fallen asleep, exhausted, loathing every extra moment spent in Mount Zoom. She'd heard no whispers, seen nothing. And now... a Ranger... killed. There were only so many people, and what if?

She knew some identities... she knew who she could trust, as far as non-wolvery went. But she never entirely knew how reliable her good guy friends were. It was always easier to trust her shady contacts. Bad guys can always be trusted to be bad. You can guarantee their allegiance with money, or with power, or with... well... she didn't really want to go into all the ways to guarantee an alliance with a sketchy dude. But they were reliable, so long as you remembered not to rely on them. And what was better, they all knew she didn't trust a word they said! With good guys, she knew they'd do something really stupid with the least provocation. There wouldn't be logic to it, they'd do it because it was the Right Thing To Do. And when she didn't trust them, half the time they were legitimately insulted. She groaned. Being in charge of all of this stuff was way too much effort and nobody actually appreciated the vast number of papers she spent her work hours ignoring.

She wanted to be in the field again. Being in charge is not fun, she reflected. Going out and slaughtering orcs... that's where the action is. Paperwork... She shuddered.

And then she rounded a corner.

The light had mysteriously dimmed to a horror-movie-graveyard shade of creepy. A shop that seemed to sell some less than legal wares played a sound track of mildly Gothic classical. A black cat ran out in front of her. She wrapped her cloak around her, pulling her hood over her long black hair. She'd tied it back at the nape of her neck, but two long, straight locks still framed her face. Try though she might, she never could stop looking like a supermodel. Even when she was trying to be secretive and creepy. She only came off as looking incredible gorgeous in a secretive and hot creepy way.

Her mind on the blisters her black leather boots were mysteriously beginning to give her, Alli never saw him coming.
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Old 09-13-2006, 04:50 PM   #226
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"Do you really thing that's possible, Panakeia? Do you?" Anakron's voice was tense and despairing. Panakeia heard the tone, and cold fear gripped her. It was as though they were back in Lost Angles a week before, when she said her adieu to Anakron near the shores of the Pathetic Ocean, and the gulls cried above in an echo of her grief.

"Oh yes. My love, my darling! It is. Let's go now. We'll leave and never come back. They'll never find us. We'll go far away from here and be happy - as happy as we've been this week."

Anakron did not reply. His handsome face looked troubled, and Panakeia's heart ached with pity for the struggle she read in his eyes. The cloak billowed on the ground, though there was no breeze to stir its folds. Panakeia stared at the cloak and hat, and it seemed to her that the hat grew larger as she watched it. Clouds began to gather in the sky, and she shivered.

At last Anakron spoke. "Yes, I have been happy, though I fear such happiness is not to be my fate."

"No! Don't say that! Don't think it! You can leave. You gave up being the Grand Anakronist. It's over. The wizards have no hold over you."

"But do you not see? They do, and will." Anakron stepped towards the staff with his fingers outstretched.

"Anakron?" Panakeia's voice cracked as she spoke.

Anakron paused, only half-looking at her, and Panakeia leant forward to kiss him. But he did not return the embrace.

"I am sorry." Anakron pulled away and took up the staff. As he did so, a storm blew out of the east. Rain began to pour. Lightning flashed, thunder crashed, and Anakron's robe waved in the wind.
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Old 09-14-2006, 06:02 AM   #227
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He had been lying in the street, in more than one way: prone on the ground, but also faking a serious leg injury to elicit sympathy. Even some burly drunken yobs had thrown him some coins, out of habit rather than care but it's results that matter, ain't it? He had plenty now to get him through another night, although one old lady had (quite rudely) advised him against purchasing another bottle. What would she know? Her measure of the fun in alcohol was probably wine spritzers: she couldn't know what was best for him!

He tried to stand up, and fell over again.

Because drunk people never see the irony, his thoughts passed swiftly to the sweet young thing crossing the street. Despite being wrapped up in black robes, this boy could tell when it was a girl (well, apart from that one time, or was it twice?) Regardless, this was a fine chance to engage with a lady. He had not had much luck with women recently; they tended to run from him and he did not know why.

Sneaking along the road behind her, for this boy was a master of stealth even at 50%, he pondered which line he would give her. He spied a trinket discarded on the ground and picked it up; then he called out: "Oh miss? Didst thou drop this jewel?"

She stopped in her tracks, but relaxed visibly. The man smiled, but this smile quickly turned to a gasp of wonder, for he recognised the girl standing before him. In the least, he was pleased to know that his judgment was accurate, and that the stranger really was a sweet young thing.

"No, Aimé, it's not mine; and besides, it's a pebble." Aimé checked his hand and sure enough the vaunted jewel was a fairly unremarkable rock.

"But it seemed so pretty..." he murmured.

"Poor inebriated Aimé" she said. "I'm glad to see you're not busy these days. I've been meaning to find you. Once we sort you out, we'll move on to business, right?"

"Sort me out?" questioned Aimé. "Whatever do you......Sweet Varda! What's going on?" He had been pulled in front of a looking glass and was forced to stare at what he had become, to confront his demons and behold this pale shadow of his former self. He could scarcely recognise the horrific image before him!

Well, by that I mean he needed a shave and a new suit; but, you know, when you looked so great previously...

"Alli, you're like that little voice of reason I never had."
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Old 09-14-2006, 07:44 AM   #228
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"Love of my life, you've always had me!" And ignoring that it wasn't in the least bit true, because she hadn't always known him, and even when she had, she still had that thing for Mardil, and then that [insert naughty adjective] Feanor of the Peredhil showed up and, really, it wasn't so much that Aimè had ever been the love of Alli's life as that they'd got very and truly inebriated together to celebrate the death and destruction of the werewolf kind. They'd danced upon a table, held hands and even, Eru behold, kissed. Probably a few times. But ignoring all of that, Alli allowed for a moment of melodrama and threw her arms around Aimè.

"Oh how I've missed you!" she murmered sadly, and then backed away. "You know... Yeah... We really do need to get you cleaned up."
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Old 09-14-2006, 08:27 AM   #229
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Suddenly Dracomir's head swam and he felt a pulling sensation behind his navel. Skittles too, amidst her leatherclad pre-rampage state, looked rather groggy, and even Hissyfit seemed to quail.

Tom shook his head violently, and the scene began to coalesce into focus again. Skittles' stare was uncharacteristically bewildered as well as angry. The two ambassadors and the cat were now in a completely different area of the Castle.

"Have you done some magical trick again, pretty-boy?" Skittles asked idly, her hand straying to her knife collection.

"This isn't me," Dracomir muttered. "Something...darker...is at work. Have you heard, Lady Skittles, of a grim and ancient incantation of delaying, propelling and postponing known only as a save?"

"No," Skittles confessed.

"Neither have I, really," Tom said with a shrug, "but I suspect that whatever it is, it's behind this mystery." I solemnly swear to fill in my save within 48 hours. Was Abraxas' enchanted map secretly involving him in powers beyond his control?

The corridor that the three reluctant companions now found themselves in was not especially exceptional. It was dusty, and dark almost to blackness, lit only by a single window, punctuated by graffiti and trophies from the Orcish Waterpolo Tournaments.

But ahead of them sprawled the distinguishing factor.

The horrifically mauled body of a man in a cloak of elven-grey, his eyes, still open and staring piteously upwards, the cold, commanding grey favoured by brooding romantic heroes, his ancient brand smashed to shards.

"A Ranger of the North," Dracomir muttered suspiciously. "But what could have been his bane?"

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Old 09-14-2006, 10:11 PM   #230
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Skittles bent down and sniffed the corpse.

"Sulphiric residue," she announced sagely. "A sign of demonic presence. Possibly this is the work of a being possessed by an evil spirit."

She straightened and cast her gaze around the hall in a dark, stormy, ulta serious fashion. "Only one creature attacks in so bestial a manner and is possessed by an evil spirit."

Hissyfit made a comment to the effect that it wasn't her, if that's what Skittles was implying, but Skittles ignored her because it was, in fact, not what she was implying at all.

She looked at Tom for a long moment, and he looked back, conveniently speechless so as to preserve the gravity of the meaningful silence. Then, they said in unison:

"A werewolf!"

"A wereduck!"

There was a moment of confusion, then Skittles said, "I said wereduck."

"Well, I said werewolf," said Tom haughtily.

"It's clearly the work of a wereduck. Possibly several of the flockers," Skittles insisted.

"Don't be daft," Tom snorted. "See the claw marks? The tufts of fur left behind?"

"Silly boy, wereducks have claws on their little webbed feet. And that could be down tufts." Skittles crossed her arms and cocked an eyebrow. "Are we gonna have to fight about this?"

Tom thought for a moment, then suggested, "Maybe it's a werewolf and a wereduck working in conjunction? A fowl alliance?"

Skittles eyes lit up, despite the overused pun. "Bingo!" she cried, snapping open a gleaming blade. "You get the wolf, I'll go for the duck."
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Old 09-15-2006, 12:45 AM   #231
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The Hunt

Dracomir nodded in a way that seemed both solemn and flippant, if that were possible.

"We shall strike at night, then, Skittles, and track down these fow...I mean, vile, creatures. I know you once dreamt, m'lady, of becoming a great oak tree."

Skittles stepped back, her eyes narrowing in suspicion, but the pseudo-Gondorian continued.

"And one day, without doubt, you shall be. But now is not the moment. You must take upon yourself the sacred duty of being a Hawk."

"Kreee kriii skkrrr krigh," Skittles answered, which was Hawkish for "Yes, and you shall be a Werewolf Hunter."

"We shall convene in the evenings to discuss our next moves," Malfoidacil went on sagely. "The culprits could be anyone in this castle. Even one of the other ambassadors. We must tell no one and never let our guard down. And, in strict confidence, I'll tell you who I'm suspecting most at the moment."

"Lola?" Skittles hissed. "Krree krivamp krree."

"One better," Tom replied. "I'm off to keep an appointment with the Spymaster of Mordor, Lady Alli..."

With that, he turned and Disapparated.

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Old 09-15-2006, 09:10 AM   #232
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The rain poured down.

"Panakeia, get you gone from Mordor."

"But-"

The sky was becoming darker with swirling cloud.

"I must stay. I have no choice."

"No! I-"

Wind swirled with increasing speed in chaotic directions.

"You will leave Mordor. I cannot now be held responsible for what may happen to you."

Panakeia was soaked through by now and the picture of despondency. Anakron could not tell whether her face was soaked with tears or rain or both. It did not matter.

"If you will not leave, then I must leave you. You have been warned!" With that, Anakron left her by the Eye Tail Yam Guard Tons or whatever the place was called. He had been duped by the Blue Istari. There was no escape. They were evil and had every intention of corrupting him. Resistance had proved futile. Rage seethed within him. He walked quickly, his robe billowing about him in the wind, heedless of the rain and lightning and thunder and frenzied people running for shelter which could barely be found in these Guard Tons. Ridiculous name.

He was going to konvey something. But the last times he had tried, things had gone awry. How had that been possible? Were the Blue Istari losing power? He doubted it. No, it must be that they were trying to confuse and frustrate him. So be it.

After a few miles more of walking he came to Caer Pairadocks and stood on the pier before the billowing sea of Nurn. He raised his staff, which howled in feline ferocity.

"Ankronism! Konvey as never before! Find that which is the most horrible force from the terrible age from which these anakronisms come! Bring it down upon all our heads! Kaos come! Konveeeeeeey!!"

Anakron felt the staff vibrate and the kat did katerwawl most fiercely, and afterward began to hak as if in a fit of hairball choking as never before, for all it could get out was "ism! ism! ism!" It was a strange thing for a kat to choke out. The wind picked up the sound and instead of kaotic howling, it carried the call and into the city of Lûndûn, screaming the strange utterance - "Ism!! Ism!! Ism!!" - unceasingly.

Anakron did not see all that happened next, but it was reported to him later.

Orks opened their eyes, which became suddenly fierce. "Ism! Ism! Ism!" Some force seemed to kollectivize them into armies of indoktrination and soon armed kontingents of orks were prowling the city calling out "Marks - Ism! Marks - Ism! Marks - Ism!" Bystanders fled in fear.

Trolls in their university chairs raised their ugly heads and heard the strange kry as far away as Kirith Ungol University. "Ism. Ism. Ism." They gathered together in deeply serious filosofikal groups, marching throught he streets, intoning, "Dialektik-Ism .... Dialektik-Ism" None knew whether they were dangerous, but most feared that somehow they were.

All over Mordor little groups became infected with the Ism konveyance, and formed bigger groups until there were armies of opposing Isms all over the land. All in a single day.
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Old 09-16-2006, 10:41 AM   #233
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Bella turns up

Dracomir reappeared on another floor, having travelled, as far as he'd gathered, in the general direction of Alli's office. He felt rather queasy from all this teleportation, whether save-induced or Apparation, and had he known of the crushing sloth of his writer, who was eager to skip further scenes wandering about in corridors, he would have been unhappy, possibly murderously so. But as it was he had no choice and no scapegoat.

With vague memories of hangovers after cast parties in some impossibly remote other life, Tom lurched about, his hair flopping into his eyes. Until, that is, he was instantly frozen in place by a spell that silently but firmly froze him where he was.

"You look a disgrace to the House of Black, boy," a haughty voice announced. Tom ticked the boxes in his head. Aristocratic belief system, husky voice, stiletto heel clinks-it had to be Auntie Bellatrix. As she walked round into Dracomir's sight, her face of dramatically ruin'd beauty faced his. She looked like a cross between Helen McCrory and Helena Bonham-Carter. Blasted casting department, Tom thought, they should really make their minds up.

"And where are you off to, weakling whelp of worthy wizards?" Bellatrix asked (her mastery of Anglo-Saxon poetic techniques was one of her most attractive, but lesser-known, interests). Of course Dracomir, paralysed, could not reply, but he guessed she must be attempting to read his mind, or rather "examine the fickle skeins of mortal thought" or whatever you called mind-reading to make it sound more impressive.

With supreme boredom, Malfoidacil mentally replied to his aunt, That won't work, you taught me Occlumency, remember? Now any chance of letting me go to get to my vital meeting with the Lady Spymaster?

Bellatrix let out a proud laugh. "Lady Spymaster? Miss Umfuil? You are much mistaken, boy. Lord Roggie trusts in me alone, his most faithful friend and servant unto death!"

Dracomir rolled his eyes. Bellatrix Lestrange had a bad Dark Lord complex. She always deluded herself that she was the most favoured minion of whatever supervillain happened to be hanging about. Voldy, naturally, Lord Asriel for a while, and, lord, that stint with Blofeld didn't bear thinking about. Roggie was apparently her latest idol.

Her stay at the Evil Single Ladies Motel with Jadis, Mrs Coulter and all those other ladettes hadn't exactly improved things.

Bellatrix released Dracomir with a flick of her pitch-black wand. "A touch of discipline is what you need, boy. Now. I have orders straight from..." she looked about carefully, "...Those-Who-Must-Not-Be Named..."

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Old 09-16-2006, 04:37 PM   #234
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Within a Mordorian amount of unspecified but unnecessarily lengthy, just to be obnoxious, time, Aimè was clean, sober, and smelling deliciously of feminine swoon inducement. It took all of Alli's will to keep her mind on the subject at hand.

"Aimè, we have a problem. We killed Mario... the Dweomer brought him back, as well as J.Lo. Whether or not they are wolves still eludes me, and I am not cool with that lack of knowledge. Illamatar is silent and my sources are unaware of the problem and therefore do not know to look for anything.

"There was an attack in the palace, Aimè... last night... my Ranger died. It was not Mario... he has an alibi... something to do with mushrooms and a princess, and that doesn't much sound plausible, but we're in Mordor, so quite frankly..." She trailed off for a moment, sipping some Jack and Coke. "I do not know where Lopez is... she could be anywhere. So my options are that Lopez attacked last night under my very nose, or that the third wolf, never identified, is in the palace slaughtering... or... there are more now.

"Aimè... what in Eru's name am I supposed to do? I'm in danger... if they find out I'm the Seer... they'll kill me. I'm their biggest threat... Aimè..." her voice fell to a whisper. "I don't want to die."
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Old 09-16-2006, 06:20 PM   #235
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Panakeia shivered in the small yellow building, her soaked dress clinging to her in folds while the wind drove yet more stinging raindrops under the roof of her inadequate shelter. Anakron's departure left her numb, and she stared blankly at the rapidly overflowing fountains. The courtyard flooded, and might have continued to flood until the entire Guard Ton was swept away if not for an outflow at the end opposite Panakeia where the rising waters could spill over to join the Sir Pen Time.

All was lost. Panakeia felt that her final battle with the Blue Istari for Anakron had been fought to a bitter end. She could do nothing more. That knowledge settled into her, and all the warmth she had felt turned to a leaden ache. Half dazed, she walked into the rain, not knowing or caring that the rain poured in ever greater torrents. Lûndûn moved past her. The streets were filled with columns of marching Orcs, chanting in an incomprehensible rhythm. They joined the muddle of scenery, and Panakeia did not learn until much later what they meant.

At the end of her walk, Panakeia found herself back in her flat, looking like nothing so much as a recently bathed cat. With no clear plan in mind, she opened a chest in her closet. Reaching into the bottom of the chest, Panakeia pulled out a faded green traveling dress and hooded brown cloak, relics of her first journey from the ruins of her childhood home. For many long years, they had lain forgotten in the trunk, but now she put them on as old friends. She had left one ruin, and they would join her in her flight from her latest tragedy.

The trunk did not remain emptied long. Panakeia's valuables soon filled it to the brim. As she was about to close it, she took a final glance around the flat. One more item caught her notice. She wrapped it in a scarf and gently slipped the package into a corner of the trunk before locking the lid.

Then came a flurry of packing. Much was left behind, but Panakeia forgot nothing of importance. Venturing into the rain again, she waved down a taxi, took her bags, and left Lûndûn.
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Old 09-17-2006, 02:13 AM   #236
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Picking up a tree root that had been caught in the wheel of Mount Zoom, Tollin made a torch, for the night (and indeed the day) of Mordor was black and terrible. They followed Sauron's road up the Mountain for a while, not talking, but sometimes, Smilog would grumble something incoherent. The Barrow Wight took out a pipe and began to blow smoke as they walked; he was the only member of the party who didn't seem annoyed or unhappy.

"Wait a moment!" cried Tollin, stooping to the ground, "these are strange tracks." Smilog looked down and saw weird shapes on the floor. It looked like tracks made by webbed feet.

"It seems odd thing have been going on," said Smilog, "we've been out of the mountain too long. I'd better find the other delegates and see what has been decided." There was a small opening just above them, the same hole made by Tollin in an earlier adventure. Swiftly they clambered up and entered inside the Mountain. All around them they could see Orcs looking afraid and suspicious of everything; they regarded Tollin especially suspiciously.

"What has happened here, old boy?" asked The Barrow Wight as a small Orc passed by.

"Don't know," it replied, "some are saying there has been murder in the Mountain. Werewolves, or worse."

"What could be worse?" asked another Orc.

"Were-ducks." said Smilog, laughing.

"How did you know?" cried the first Orc in amazement.

"Eh?" said the Dwarf, "you cannot be serious." the Orc nodded solemnly and then dashed off. "Ah, who cares," Smilog snorted, "I've had enough adventure so far. Whatever this is can sort itself out."
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Old 09-22-2006, 02:10 PM   #237
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"How far is it to the tavern?" Hyarmenwë asked Maika. "I'm afraid I don't know Mordor too well."

"About half an hour, as the Nazgûl flew," said Elrogorn, "more like two hours as a vulture flies, and probably about three or four for these old nags."

"I think he was asking me," said Maika, a bit stiffly.

"Why, so he may have been," said Elrogorn, "but as official Ranger of this company, it falls within my expertise."

"So we're a company now?" Maika looked faintly amused.

"Well, we're getting there," said Elrogorn. "We still need a flatulant Dwarf, a wisecracking Halfing, and an anti-hero. We've already got the noble, dashing hero (that's me), the fair maiden, and the wise old sage."

"Don't you think that's a little... passé?" asked Maika.

"This is Mordor," shrugged Elrogorn. "Passé is the fashion. Well, one of the fashions."

"Surely there aren't halflings here in Mordor," said Hyarmenwë.

"Sure there are!" said Elrogorn. "For some reason, the culture that all these anakronisms come from is fascinated by Hobbits. There's a whole "Little Hobbiton" section in downtown Lûndûn. Some great ethnic food there. Ever been to that decadent little mushroom shop on Bingo Bolger-Bracegirdle-Boffin-Baggins Boulevard, Lady Maika?"

Maika had, and she and Elrogorn reminisced briefly about the delights of the shop, which Hyarmenwë resolutely attempted to ignore. A couple hours later, as the midday sun was rising to its highest point in the sky, they returned to a familiar point in Gorgoroth, the Gondmordorian tavern in sight.

"Ah, the good old culture-in-exile," said Elrogorn nostalgically. Abruptly, Elrogorn slipped from nostalgia to a stiff battle stance.

"Wereducks!" he cried, somersaulting backwards off his horse, ending up standing right side-up, facing the opposite direction, in what must have been an anatomically impossible manuveur, sword already flying to his hand.

"Enter the building and do what you must!" he cried at Maika and Hyarmenwë, who had already begun leaving him. "I shall fight these foul beasts!"

As Hyarmenwë was dismounting and tethering his nag, he happened to glance behind him. Quickly, he averted his eyes and dashed into the inn. For he had seen the immense, orange-billed visage of a towering rubber-duckie waddling into sight.

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Old 09-22-2006, 08:10 PM   #238
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Anakron left Caer Pairadocks and hied him back to Mount Zoom. From a regal distance (which amounts to the distance between one end from the other of Bugging Ham Ballast) he espied none other than a Dwarf, a Minotaur, and a Barrow Wight ascending the mountain by means of the great road of the former Dark Lord.

He walked across a number of historically ascendant (whatever that means) city blocks of Lûndûn, passing through a Slottish Bank district, a Twee Eight Oor district where moving pictures showed the misadventures of various Not Ready for the Big Screen Players flatulated, vibratedly exhaled, Bronx cheered, and behaved generally badly in an effort to score laughs at the expense of good humor. Anakron quickly passed on, pleased with the Theatrical ExtremISM anakronistically imposed thereon.

He was climbing the mountain, wondering what in Mordor a Dward, Minotaur, and Barrow Wight had to do with the seemingly not-pressing pseudo-negotiations between Gondorian and Mordorian ambassadors.

He approached the threesome, and a passing orc. Anakron absent mindedly konveyed a bit of anakronism on the orc, who immediately donned thick black glasses, began murmuring "heck is other people", and otherwise behaved as an exitentialIST playwrite.

The threesome were commenting on Were-ducks and werewolves.

"What's this," Anakron interrupted, "about lycanthropy?"
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Old 09-23-2006, 12:09 PM   #239
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It is written in the annals of Mordor that a group of odd folk was conveyed to the Fourth Age of Middle-earth through the devices of the Anakronism Dweomer. The name given to the strangers (from a stranger land known only as the 60s) was the hippies. The word hippie was a source of puzzlement to those who met them, as they had no particular vastness of hip. Be that as it may, little ill was spoken of them, or inscribed upon the hard drives and data backup systems of the Mordorian networks, and in time, it came to pass that they were accepted, for their knowledge of herb lore was great, and their calls for peace and love, while seeming out of place in the former Land of Shadow, could not be easily protested.

They settled in a valley to the north of Lûndûn, and their happiness was great, for they had much time to plant flowers, and herbs of multitudinous type, and to sing to the accompaniment of guitars and drums. All was well for them, and as the years went on, their long hair began to turn grey, and their hips grew outwards until they did in truth merit their name of hippie. Then too, their middles grew broad and flabby and sagged over their hips, and it was said that their time had ended and they were hippy no more, for their midriffs surpassed their hips. Thus they came to be called the Were-hippies.

Alas for that ill-fated jest! For as it was spoken, both puns and lycanthropy were assigned to Mordor, and through that cruel dual agency, the hippie's happiness was, if not ended, at least diminished. Those who decide such things thought that with the removal of punctuation, the Were-hippies should be Werehippies, doomed to a life of transformation along with other werecreatures. By day, they yet retained their human shape, but in the night, they took on the shape of the dreaded Werehippopotamus, shortened for convenience to Werehippie.

But even as Werehippies, their love of peace could not wholly be undone, and while other creatures wrought great destruction, their attention was turned only to plants of various shape, which they consumed with great hunger until morning, when they again took up their headbands and beads and sang in their gardens. They regretted their fate as much as might be expected, though they had to admit that shapeshifting was rather groovy.

It was said that there would be one who would deliver them from their fate, though it was not known where or how this one should appear. They would know only at the moment of their rescuer's appearance, which would be in the most unexpected fashion. This deliverer was awaited with great expectation, though many despaired of ever being cured of their calamity.

~*~

Panakeia's taxi rolled past miles of countryside until a calm green valley caught her attention. Cottages could be seen in its depths, smoke curling out of their chimneys, and flowers bloomed everywhere. The scene was so un-Mordorian that Panakeia blinked. Could it be real? She resolved to find out.

"Stop here."

The driver hurried helped Panakeia with her baggage and, hardly stopping to collect the fare, fled the scene. As she descended into the valley, Panakeia wondered what could have caused the driver such a fright.

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Old 09-24-2006, 03:04 PM   #240
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The air was heavy in the Mountain, despite the sounds of mirth mixed with frustration coming from the few remaining casino rooms. Smilog and the others wandered along the corridors seeking any way to bring them back to the conference room. Most of the signposts and maps with "You are Here" written on had been broken or destroyed in the moving of the Mountain. The Dwarf stroked his long beard and hummed with frustration.

"I begin to loathe this mountain," he muttered, "It was once good and a homely place, especially after the Dwarves had carved out the lower halls, but since Roggie turned it to his own uses it has lost its charm."

"Did the dwarves build the labyrintttthhh?" asked Tollin, suddenly getting flashes of his old self, but slapping his own face in order to get rid of it.

"That?" mused Smilog, "No. No I don't think so. It looked Mordorian to me. Orcs, most likely. You remember how easily those walls fell down. If it was Dwarf make, it would take a thousand men a thousand years to crack the walls." He grinned and almost laughed at the thought until, all of a sudden; he was tripped over by a small man with a scowling face.

The man was short, only a little taller than Smilog, with no beard or, indeed, any hair at all, it seemed. He was dressed in a long black robe with red lining and he carried a great halberd in one had while the other gripped a scroll tight. "You!" he cried, "murderer! Wretched Dwarf! I've been searching for you!"

Smilog sat up and shook his head; he examined the man carefully and said, "Do I know you?" The fury that covered the face of the man made even Tollin step back while The Barrow Wight leaped to the floor and covered his face.

"You wretched fool!" the man shouted, "you killed my son! Ten Months ago! When Roggie had you looking after his Orc and Haradrim re-education establishment!"

"I-" stuttered Smilog, "I don't remember any of that. I have no idea of what you're talk- WAIT! It's all coming back to be now!"
...

____

Ten Months earlier...

A rather frustrated and slightly grimmer Smilog sat at a desk in a small office filled with bookshelves and paintings of Roggie that he had tried to tear down but had been unsuccessful. A man with a tremendous locks of hair down to his ankles stepped into the room. He was dressed in the manner of the Haradrim and had a great hat of many colours upon his head. "You wanted to see me?" he said.

"Ah, yes..." grumbled Smilog, "Mr... erm... Palthwait?" The man nodded, "well, I'm afraid it's your son. He's been in a spot of trouble recently."

"Oh dear," sighed Palthwait, sitting down, "if he's in bother, I'd like to nip it in the bud right away." Smilog grunted and put his newspaper down.

"Well, Mr. Palthwait," said Smilog, lighting a pipe, "he's always in trouble. He never joins in the sports and activities. He never enters into the spirit of the establishment and it's been weeks since anyone has seen any work from him." Mr Palthwait shook his head and sighed, "Quite frankly, Mr. Palthwait, if he wasn't dead, I'd have him expelled." Palthwait nodded and then thought for a moment, before the words sunk in.

"I beg your pardon!" He exclaimed.

"Yes," grunted the Dwarf, "Expelled!" He blew a smoke ring over the man's head, "He's lying in the houses of healing now, stiff as a bone. And this is very much typical of his current behaviour. One minuet he flying around like a paper kite, the next he's immovable and starting to smell."

Blinded by rage and confusion, Palthwait stood up and slammed his fist on the table, shouting, "What happened? How did he die?"

Smilog raised an eyebrow, "Is that important?" he asked, Palthwait nodded, "well," he continued, "he was caught eating in the corridor. I administered a beating, during which he died. Now, the reason we have a no eating policy is quite simple. It's taken us ages to get rid of the rats in Mordor and we don't want litter attracting them back. So each student carries a card with which-"

"You beat my son to death?" cried Palthwait, now consumed with fury.

"Yes." said Smilog flatly, "I must say, I find your morbid obsession with your son's death quite disturbing. But anyway," Smilog stood up, "my work here is done. Today is my last day and I'm going off to another project this afternoon." he left the room and walked down the corridor running through, in his head, the list of things he needed to do that evening.

"I’ll get you for this, Dwarf!" cried the man, "You'll pay! £4.50! And more!"

_____

Back in the 'present' day or whatever...

Palthwait stared at Smilog with a confused look, "How did you remember something I said if you weren't even there?" he asked. The Dwarf did not reply, instead he made use of this distraction to run with all his might down the corridor, swiftly followed by Tollin and The Barrow Wight.

"You killed his son?" asked Tollin, "was that necessary?"

"I don't know!" cried the Dwarf as he flew down a flight of stairs they had just found, "It was a long time ago."

Last edited by Hookbill the Goomba; 09-29-2006 at 12:33 AM.
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