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 .../________________/      running on 9999

 VOLUME TEN, NUMBER THIRTY-ONE                          September 29, 2003

                          TABLE OF CONTENTS

                        NEWS, REPORTS, UPDATES
                          Calendar of Events
                            Recent Updates
                          Recent Q&A Topics

                     MoiraGwyn Gains Experience
                     Seeking Athena's Blessing...

                              Clan News
                  New Player Helpers Clan Reforms
            Knights of the Temple Celebrate 3rd Anniversary
                       A Hot Line From Hell
                          LAF Wants YOU!!! 

                            The PK Front

                  He Came, He Saw, He Thrashed My Office
                          The Road of Love
                        Death Has Its Rewards! 
                   The Sticky Business of Smuggling
                  The Art of Haemomagick - Maleficia
                  From Prelude Into Symphony, PART III
                      From Darkness Comes Hope!
___                                                                   ___
\  |-----------------------------------------------------------------|  /
/__|                   LegendMUD Calendar of Events                  |__\
          [All times are system time unless otherwise specified]

                   SEPTEMBER                     OCTOBER   
             Su  M Tu  W Th  F Sa          Su  M Tu  W Th  F Sa   
                 1  2  3  4  5  6                    1  2  3  4  
              7  8  9 10 11 12 13           5  6  7  8  9 10 11   
             14 15 16 17 18 19 20          12 13 14 15 16 17 18
             21 22 23 24 25 26 27          19 20 21 22 23 24 25   
             28 29 30                      26 27 28 29 30 31   

Thursday, October    2nd    7:30 pm            Q&A in the OOC Auditorium
Saturday, October    4th   10:00 pm            Trivia!
Thursday, October    9th    7:30 pm            Q&A in the OOC Auditorium
                            9:30 pm            Flag Hunt  
Sunday,   October   12th    3:00 pm            October Tinyplot
Thursday, October   16th    7:30 pm            Q&A in the OOC Auditorium
Saturday, October   18th    3:00 pm            Autumn Casino
Sunday,   October   19th    3:00 pm            PK Open Practice 
Thursday, October   23rd    7:30 pm            Q&A in the OOC Auditorium
Thursday, October   30th    7:30 pm            Q&A in the OOC Auditorium

Also Coming in October:
Trick? or Treat? Elfgame

___                                                                   ___
\  |-----------------------------------------------------------------|  /
/__|                        Recent Updates                           |__\

    /\                       CODE UPDATES
   /  \     
  /    \    BUG FIXES
 /_    _\     o Fixes the follow the leader looping bug.
   |  |       o PK healing fixed.
   |  |       o Steal should work properly for pke and pkok now.
   |  |       o Healing bonus from iron will/valor/courage no longer
   |__|         works while rooting.
    /\        o Hitroll/damroll show as flux/stable in attributes when
   /  \         under lvl 10.
  /    \    
 /_    _\   TYPO FIXES
   |  |       o Two handed changed to two-handed for wielding messages.
   |  |       o Typo fix for clan deposit.
   |  |       o Mood adverb fixes for smoother reading.
   |__|       o Typo fix in pillow social.
    /\        o Typo fix for dispel magic's removal of clumsiness spell
   /  \       o Damroll and hitroll will no longer reset to zero when
  /    \        renting.
 /_    _\     o Act fix for looping rooms
   |  |     
   |  |     MISC CHANGES
   |  |       o Barkskin group castable as well as self.
   |__|       o Limit and unlimit use the warning comments to note in the
    /\          warning list when people are limited and unlimited.
   /  \       o SKIM  command added to list posts which have been
  /    \        written or appended to within the past six days.
 /_    _\     o The max change for hitroll/damroll is now six.
   |  |       o Weather system work to reduce lag
   |  |     
   |  |     
   |__|                    HELP FILE UPDATES
   /  \     General Topics:
   |  |          RULES, SLOT, STAT, STRING, WARNING, and ZIP
   |  |     
   |  |     Skill Topics:
   /  \     
  /    \    
 /_    _\                      AREA UPDATES
   |  |     
   |  |     If you want to suggest specific improvements or new additions
   |  |     to existing areas please don't hesitate to submit them with
   |__|     the idea/bug/typo commands or drop mudmail to the builder
    /\      currently responsible for the area (check AREAINFO to find
   /  \     out!).
  /    \    
 /_    _\   Various areas that checked if a character was flying, now
   |  |     consider using aerial vehicles as flying as well as the spells.
   |  |     
   |  |     Numerous areas saw internal changes in how they catch
   |__|     messages relating to weather and changing times of day.
    /\      Hopefully, the changes will be transparent, but if you
   /  \     experience something that seems out of the ordinary, please
  /    \    drop a note about it on the bug channel so we can chase down
 /_    _\   any problems easier.
   |  |     
   |  |     The (original) Prize Machine in the ooc was updated.
   |  |     
   |__|     THE ALHAMBRA
    /\           Alfredo stocks less of any given item. Various bugs and
   /  \          typos fixed. It's slightly more dangerous in the unused
  /    \         hallways if you disturb the denizens. Various minor bugs
 /_    _\        fixed.
   |  |     
   |  |     ANCIENT EGYPT
   |  |          Some changes to the crocodile, be careful! Shopkeepers
   |__|          deal better with burkos. Various minor bugs fixed.
   /  \     ANCIENT GREECE
  /    \         Consolidates some yellzones, new forage and fishing
 /_    _\        possibilities. Custom weather for the storm-tossed seas.
   |  |          Various minor bugs and typos fixed.
   |  |     
   |  |     CELTIC IRELAND
   |__|          It should be harder to find a burning roof that isn't
    /\           (Flaming). Fiddled some with the resets on the
   /  \          scruffy-looking men in the inn. Various minor bugs and
  /    \         typos fixed.
 /_    _\   
   |  |          Mobs here are generally smarter about trying to headbutt
   |  |          nonhumans and won't try to elbow or choke the undead.
   |__|          Adds some missing keywords fixes various bugs and typos.
  /    \         Mobs here are generally smarter about trying to headbutt
 /_    _\        nonhumans and won't try to elbow or choke the undead.
   |  |          Shark is now much more dangerous to charmies. Various
   |  |          bugs and typos fixed.
   |  |     
    /\           Fixes Sylia's lack of skill lag problem.
   /  \     
  /    \    ROMAN BRITAIN
 /_    _\        Typo fixes, makes sure that blinding affect comes after
   |  |          the message. Various minor bugs and typos fixed.
   |  |     
   |__|          Some quests should go more smoothly now. Various minor
    /\           bugs and typos fixed.
   /  \     
 /_    _\        Foraged blaeberries and cloudberries have those
   |  |          keywords. Various minor bugs and typos fixed.
   |  |     
   |  |     PORT OF LONDON
   |__|          The nurse now accepts assistance in her busy day from
    /\           those with certain medical skills. Various minor bugs
   /  \          and typos fixed.
  /    \    
 /_    _\   PITTSBURGH
   |  |          A little clarification on what the stranger teaches.
   |  |     
   |  |     ROMANIA
   |__|          Be very careful when fighting janissaries, they really
    /\           do outnumber you. Dreams added. Various minor bugs and
   /  \          typos fixed.
  /    \    
 /_    _\   SAN FRANCISCO
   |  |          Fixes the trans quest, fixes some minor bugs and typos.
   |  |     
   |  |     SHERWOOD
   |__|          Will and the foresters don't like to stay entranced now.
    /\           Clarified the "You can only go ooc at innkeepers"
   /  \          message when you can't rent at Stag or Salutation.
  /    \         Various minor bugs and typos fixed.
 /_    _\   
   |  |     VICEROYAL PERU
   |  |          No more generic reptiles. Various minor bugs and typos
   |  |          fixed.
   /  \          Bjarni no longer produces unlimited pig iron. Various
  /    \         minor bugs and typos fixed.
 /_    _\   
    /\      WWI SOMME, and ZANZIBAR,
   /  \          Various minor bugs and typos fixed.
  /    \    
 /_    _\   
   |  |                    In Progress Area Updates
   |  |     
   |  |     This section is intended to share what builders are working
   |__|     on behind the scenes. It is not a perfect record of progress
    /\      as all builders do not commit updates every week. Badgering
   /  \     builders about their progress will get you flogged. 
  /    \    
 /_    _\           Chimera       Midsummer's (Shakespeare play)
   |  |             Chocorua      Prohibition New Hampshire
   |  |             LadyAce       Kleinstadt (Update)
   |  |             Kae           Larderello (Dante's Hell)
   |__|             Kheldar       Medieval Sea Trade

  _______   ____    _______
 /  ___  \ / __ \  /  ___  \  Logs of Q&A sessions are available on the
 | /   \ | \ \/ /  | /   \ |  web pages for those who are unable to attend
 | |   | |  \  /   | \___/ |  or had to leave early. The most recent ones
 | |   | |  /  \/\ |  ___  |  are listed on the sitemap page or you can
 | | /\| | / /\  / | /   \ |  get a complete list on the Q&A index page
 | \_\ \ | \ \/  \ | \   / |  at the url below.
  \___\/_/  \__/\/ \_/   \_|

                             RECENT TOPICS

 o Limits on Archived Chars?         o Exploration Req for Levels?
 o Surgery Reqs and Dress Wound?     o No Games This Month?
 o Assassinations on Info?           o Current Coding Priorities?
 o New Skills/Spells Planned?        o Post Problems with Walls/Healing
 o Klein Update ETA?                 o New Area Progress?
 o What's with the Lag?              o Calm Vs Calendar for CAL?
 o Blackbeard too Easy?              o Fixes for Walls & Healing?
 o New Hunt Lag too Slow?            o Changes for Failed Flees?
 o Date for PK Tourney?              o Bug with Equipping Con Gear?
 o Feedback on Hunt Lag              o General Suggestions/Questions

___                                                                    ___
\  |------------------------------------------------------------------|  /
/__|      LEGENDITES: Information Regarding the People of Our World   |__\

                Cheap has reached 200 million experience!
              MoiraGwyn has reached 200 million experience!


King Rowane stopped to cradle his wife's face in the palms of his hands.
Gently he kissed her.

'You don't have to go with if you don't want to,' his voice was soft,

MoiraGwyn stared up at her husband, her face damp with a mixture of sweat
and the blood of the fallen unseelies their group had just slain.

'My priority is to be at your side, no matter what,' MoiraGwyn hoped her
voice did not quake with the fear she felt. Going up against Queen Oonagh
of the Daoine sidhe, whom she had respected before now, was a feat the
young Bri Leith sidhe Queen felt unsure she could handle.

'Hermes understands... I am sure the others do as well,' Rowane held his
wife to him as a group member reached a hand towards the door separating
Queen Oonagh and her guards from their group. 'Our job is to protect our
people. We are all they have.' His golden eyes seemed to sparkle amidst
the splatter of unseelie blood across his face. How brave and wise he
was. How much she truly loved him....

Moiragwyn de'Dannan drew her weapon, and with a battlecry that could wake
the dead, charged into the throne room of their fellow royal.


After the fierceness of the battle had broken and the Queen of the Daoine
changed her views on the position of the Bri Leith sidhe in relation to
the unseelie, the two Carian Trag leaders found themselves collapsing
next to each other in the moonlit glade they had once courted in.

King Rowane studied his wife's face with a look of immense pride.

'Today is something I never thought I would see the day of...' Her eyes
met his as she took his hand. 'I never thought a time would come where I
would have to battle someone I was supposed to be friends with. But, my
wise and wonderful teacher, you are right. We can not ever allow anyone
to hurt our people. And never will I let you go into battle without me
there to protect you!' She smiled at him but seemed resigned. 'We did it,
honey.' She held his palm up to her lips, kissing it.

Rowane de'Dannan looked very loving as he leaned his face closer to his
wife's, his voice a whisper. 'Don't forget how much I love you.' His lips
brushed gently over hers just as they had years before when the two were

A soft light filtered over the glade, the blessings of the God Hermes,
their protector, washing over them as one of the two learned a rather
important lesson about both life and love.

[Info]: MoiraGwyn has reached 200 million experience!


                     Seeking Athena's Blessing...

I, Sor, the Viking berserker, seeks helps in obtaining blessing from the
mighty and gentle Athena. If you are able to assist me in this task,
please write to me, and I shall have somebody read it out loud to me as
soon as possible.

     ___                                                          ___
     \  |--------------------------------------------------------|  /
     /__|                     Clan News                          |__\

                  New Player Helpers Clan Reforms

Wren formed the clan on September 15, 2003. The purpose of the clan is to
help New Players! And stuff. Please note that we are not experience
and/or eq getters - mostly knowledge providers! And 
save-you-from-the-bad-boar or EEK...I'm LOST! people.


 The Knights Templar Celebrates Their ... somethingorother Anniversary

The Knights of the Temple celebrated their third anniversary of forming
under the free-form clan system on September 13, 2003.

When asked for a few words about his clan, Fra. Tancred de Gisborne had
the following to say:

     The clan of the Poor Knights of Christ of the Temple of Solomon
     of Jerusalem -- the Knights Templar for short -- was founded in
     spring 1997, long before there was a free-forming clan system
     on LegendMUD. As you can probably imagine, keeping check of who
     was who and who needed copied on clan mails was a small
     nightmare! Nonetheless, we were in fact among the first 'real'
     role-play clans, along with LaZy and the Cult of {S}.

     The Knights Templar early engaged in pkill activities under the
     old system (quite similar to current days' PKE system) as well
     as it retained numerous members who were not enabled;
     surprisingly, we managed to avoid any accusations of
     interference or unfair play. We also managed to win expies for
     best clan on a few occasions. Those were the days -- and it was
     with some grief I watched the clan disband for low membership
     once, setting our forming date years back. Merely cosmetics,
     but still.

     The Knights Templar have always been a heavy role-play clan
     based on the historical Knights Templar, crusaders and
     religious fanatics to the Holy Land, sworn to poverty, chastity
     and obedience, and willing to sacrifice everything and everyone
     for justice and religion.

     The hard-core Christian fundamentalist role-play has brought us
     into conflict with just about everyone on many occasions,
     foreswearing magic as we do. But like any other clan, the
     Knights Templar thrive on conflict and hardships to rally us,
     and it will be a sad day that sees the last Templar protest the
     use of pagan sorcery, even if to heal his own beat-up self.

     Looking for an excuse to role-play a rabid fundamentalist? Up
     to the challenge of heavy role-play? Eager to be alone amongst
     a thousand enemies? Always wanted to thump someone with the
     Bible first and the sword later? Contact your local Knight
     Templar today.


       L|J(_)             Sir Percy Blakeney has been seen asking
   )    | (")      (      delicatessen owners everywhere what exactly is
   ,(.  |`/ \- y  (,`)    involved in a certain nocturnal game involving
  )' (' | \ /\/  ) (.     satin sheets, creamy white chocolate and
 (' ),) | _W_   (,)' ).   sugar-coated strawberries, but while his lady
  A Hot Line From Hell    wife Aemilia seems to know, she has chosen not
                          to share this little secret with him. Yet. Such
is the sweet creaminess of domestic life?

Word has it that Master Tancred de Gisborne has proved himself that not
even the purest of faith enables a Knight Templar to walk on water.

And in the short and unsolicited section we can report without personal
verification (thank the powers that be) that Prince Jaid reputably wears
Winnie the Pooh underwear, and that Seifer, mourning the loss of a
stuffed goat toy stolen from Toys R Us, attempted to replace them with a
set of goat ears stolen from King Cheap. The author resumes no
responsibility for the validity of these, um, statements.


                          LAF Wants YOU!!! 

ive been havin a bit of trouble you see... almost no one paid attention
to my article, im dead serious. i need some people who know what they are
doing. mudmail me or name to get ahold of the details.

Syphor S. Flamesaber


There are currently 23 RP clans and 3 PK clan. This leaves open slots for
seven (7) more clans to form. For more information, read HELP CLAN and see
the clan information list via the CLANS command while logged into the
game. For a basic handbook and reference guide for players interested in
starting and running a clan, we recommend that before you even type FORM,
you visit:

     ___                                                          ___
     \  |--------------------------------------------------------|  /
     /__|                    The PK Front                        |__\

For the past three weeks the clan with the most members active in pkill
has been the Prophets. The second place spot has been traded around and
shared by the Necromancers, the Infernals, The Grendels and the
Syndicate. Also seeing action in the last three weeks were members of the
following clans: The Armed Forces of Legend, The Avengers, The Society of
Allies, The Knights of Legend, The IRA, The Wardens, The Knights of the
Temple, The United Surgeons of Legend, The Seven Circles, The Hermetic
Order, and The Agrabah Mafia.


Three weeks ago there were 26 pk-related deaths involving 33 different
characters. Of those 33 characters, 13 of them were accept all and 16 of
them were PKE at the time. There were 10 pke vs pke battles that ended in

Two weeks ago there were 72 pk-related deaths involving 39 different
characters. Of those 39 characters, 20 of them were accept all and 23 of
them were PKE at the time. There were 41 pke vs pke battles that ended in

Last week there were 34 pk-related deaths involving 29 different
characters. Of those 29 characters, 11 of them were accept all and 15 of
them were PKE at the time. There were 19 pke vs pke battles that ended in
death. There are currently 63 PKE characters total. So come on, let's get
YOUR name up in lights! We can't report on it if you don't tell us!

If you witness or commit any glorious or nefarious deeds, send a short
report to us at the LT. If you are looking for a fight, recruiting, or
anything else related to PK (not necessarily PK Clan related), send it
in! It's free AND you'll get a prize token! Be a celebrity, the envy of
all your friends! Tick off your enemies or just tell your side of the
story! The possibilities are endless -- act today!!

             /                       \
        o O | Wonder what folks are   |
  `\|||/    | doing over at LegendMUD?|
   (o o)     \_______________________/

                  He Came, He Saw, He Thrashed My Office

'I'm the psychiatrist, I'm the psychiatrist,' Dr. Hinkleberry repeated to
himself in his mind. He began to understand how his patients felt, as he
tried to gain control over the scrutinizing gaze of his new patient, a
ferret-like, sable-clad Frenchman.

'So, these... aristocrats enjoy luxury which you think is unjustified, and
so you want to chop all their heads off. Is that really fair?'

'Well, yes, I think it is. Why not?'

'And this flower... the Scarlet Pimpernel, is the main cause for all your
anger and stress? Have you ever considered gardening to curb this?'

'It's not the flower! It's the man! The cursed Englishman!' came the
response from a now provoked man. Probably shouldn't have mentioned that
name. 'It's none of his business! But does he care? No! He comes in and
meddles around with our affairs and my wardrobe, rescuing prisoners which
are obviously ours, and taunts me after that! The blue eyes! They're
everywhere! Why am I even here! I have intrigues to plot! Heads to chop!
Englishmen to destroy!' Chauvelin continued rambling on with a long
anathema, which Dr. Hinkleberry noticed he was included into. And there
was a certain new gleam in his eye now as he turned his attention back
towards the doctor. 'I see you have blue eyes too, Doctor...'

Dr. Hinkleberry squirmed a little under the suspicious gaze of his
patient. Recommending a plant or puppy for the patient. And clothes with
happier colours. Why didn't I just become a grocer like I wanted to? 'Why
don't you tell me a little about your family instead?'

'She blackmailed me into marrying her! And now she's changing my
furniture, and my office, and her things are everywhere! Look at me! Does
it look like I want a floral print sofa? And all these affairs she's
having with everyone else! I'm powerful and ruthless, there are plenty of
others who find that attractive. I should be doing the questioning here!
You haven't told me about your family, are you noble by birth? Noble
ancestors? English perhaps?'

'Well! That's really a very interesting story, I heard that my great
grandfather was really a marquis and he...'

'Copeau! Mercier!' yelled Chauvelin, rudely interrupting Dr. Hinkleberry
just as he was about to start on a boring history of his lineage, and in
response entered two men, dressed in uniform.

'Tell my next patient I may be laaaate!' yelled Dr. Hinkleberry to his
bewildered secretary, as he was dragged out of his office by the two men,
with Chauvelin following close behind, looking much happier and satisfied
than when he came in. Another patient well served.


                         The Road of Love

It was a windy day in the city of Kleinstadt, as Zedikae sit around the
local Quelle, watching his air sprites grow larger and larger. Now, we
all know Zedikae is one of those big lazy create mages, and as so, has
grown to be quite greedy. Corpses of guards and Ritters lay all over the
place, their dead bodies stripped of all of their gear. Little clay men
sit with Zedikae at the Quelle, wearing armor and wielding swords that
are way too big for them.

'Well, time to get going I suppose. Don't want to miss my appointment
with the Russians, they pay good money for German armors!', said Zedikae.

The small clay men being used as porters just stand there, saying nothing
to their cruel master, waiting for him to move so they can follow him
along to oh so familiar route to Alaska.

Zedikae set out on the road from Kleinstadt to London, taking time to
examine the local trees and animals. Suddenly, a raven-haired lady jumped
down from one of the trees, a large weapon in hand.

'You there! You sure do have a big load. I think I will be taking that
from you now,' she said.

'Well, I wouldn't advise that, really. You see, I am quite an
accomplished mage, and my pet Salamander here might not like you messing
with me,' replied Zedikae.

The bandit rushed at Zedikae, sword drawn.

Zedikae screamed out an incantation. Suddenly a bolt of lightning came
crashing out of the sky, landing just in front of the bandit, freezing
her in her tracks. The bandit looked up at the sky, and then down at the
lightning-scorched ground inches in front of her and shuddered.

'Damned mages, give me the creeps they do,' she hissed under her breath.

The battle raged on a bit more, Zedikae dodging the bandit's attacks, or
his charmed mobiles getting in the way and taking the blow for him.
Zedikae continued to miss the bandit with his spells, not really wanting
to hurt her, just scare her off. Truth be told, he found her quite
captivating. Nice dark hair, lust for greed, big weapon....Finally the
two came to an agreement.

'Ok, fine. You can keep your shipment. But I'm accompanying you to your
destination, and you owe me 10%!,' said the bandit.

'Sure sure whatever. Lets just end this before I miss my appointment,'
said Zedikae.

The two continued along the road to London, the bandit taking the lead,
while Zedikae hovered along the ground in the rear, keeping an eye on
both the bandit, and his shipment of goods.


                         Death Has Its Rewards! 
                           by Holzt Xylander

As some of you may have noticed, I have not been about in recent weeks
and things seem to have quietened down for my somewhat disreputable clan,
well I would like to explain in as small a words as possible what
occurred so perhaps others might join me here.

Basically I was talking with Barabas Bonecrusher about his new found
catatonic state, which produced little result and that got me thinking
about what is really waiting for us after our clothes have been burned
from our backs, we have been bricked up in a room by some disgusting mage
and our very life essence is almost depleted.

So I went to console myself over a few pints of ale, and as is likely to
happen after several pints I noticed that everyone in the place with
giving me a rather awkward glance.

Now this might be nothing to you puny lightblinders but to one such as
myself where the carving of entrails is like your pathetic sword practice
at 5am... well you get the picture.. it was a good time to hone my skills
and possibly see what really is in the hereafter.

As it turns out when a room full of burly bar patrons are giving you an
awkward glance that COULD be a good time to break someones nose, tear a
gaping wound in someones abdomen and scream You Filthy Truffles Won't Take
Me Alive!... but as it happens its also a very good time to leave.

So as I thrust my dagger into yet another overly plump patron's belly, I
noticed that I'd begun to leak in a very curious fashion around my chest,
and during the heat of battle i hadnt really noticed the 20 inch long
broken off chair leg someone had thrust into my heart, I suspect the
buffoons thought me a vampire.

As I collapsed I noticed it was rather warm, whether it was the blood
spewing out around me or just what it felt like to die I don't honestly
know, but when I awoke I found myself in a rather odd circular room with
a vicious sulfuric stench.

And a curious little imp approached and informed me that this would be my
new home, the seventh circle of hell, where I would be bathed in hot
blood for the remainder of my stay.

What struck me as most curious was the fact that this imp spoke english
with such an educated and effeminate tongue, so I grasped it by its neck
and beat its head against the wall for a good hour.

When I was finally exhausted it said, 'Welcome to the Inferno' and
disappeared in a cloud of sulfur and static electricity.


                   The Sticky Business of Smuggling

Dr. Hinkleberry wiped his glasses clean on a linen handkerchief and
quietly observed his new client. The patient sported a tall black hat and
a long, curling, willowy mustache, the kind best suited for twirling.
Twirling did indeed seem to suit the client, as he sat on the
psychiatrist's plush couch and turned his black mustache around a long,
pointed finger.

'Let's start with introductions, shall we?' said the psychiatrist,
leaning back in his overstuffed leather chair. 'Tell me about yourself.'

The patient chuckled. 'Snidely Whiplash. Logger, robber, muckraker, and
smuggler extraordinaire.'

The psychiatrist perched his wire-framed glasses on his broad nose and
started to scribble notes on his notepad. 'Er. Smuggler? And just what do
you smuggle?'

'Furs, mostly,' Snidely said, stretching expansively and sprawling his
short frame across the couch. 'Logs, tubas, maple syrup, explosives,
whiskey, polka bands, just about anything, really. Anything that will
upset the Mounties.'

'Ah. I didn't realize there was a black market for maple syrup,' remarked
the doctor.

Snidely grinned. 'There are a lot of waffle houses, aren't there? Without
me there would be no waffle houses.' The patient's small black eyes shone
with mischief. 'Why, they would have to buy from reputable sources at
double the cost! Then where would the world be? No waffle houses. None!
No flapjack joints! No pancake restaurant chains! They need their genuine
Canadian maple syrup! It's a public service, you see.'

Dr. Hinkleberry waited quietly until his patient's devilish cackling
subsided, passing the time by scratching out 'CRACKPOT' in large letters
in the notebook. 'Let's get back to your comment on the Mounties. You
don't care for them? Do you feel you have a problem with authority

Snidely crossed his arms over his chest in a gesture of defiance. 'I
don't like Mounties. Hate them. The whole lot of them, with their red
uniforms and shiny black boots and some stupid idea that they have to
catch bad guys. The women love that, the whole uniform thing. Makes me
just sick.'

The doctor murmured accordingly, crossing out the crackpot comment on his
notepad. Labels can hurt, he thought, replacing crackpot with 'NUTS'
written in bold, block letters. 'You have had run-ins with them, have

The smuggler sighed heavily, shoulders sagging. 'That blasted Do-right.
Always gets in the way. Everywhere I steal something, blow something up,
or kidnap Nell, he's always there.'

'Do-right?' Dr. Hinkleberry inquired politely.

'Dudley Do-right. Mountie. A real pain in my neck. He has a horse that
irritates me too.'

'And why is that?'

Snidely sniffed. 'Nell loves him. Loves him and not me! Oh, they all go
for a blond hero-type with a square jaw and vacant expression, don't
they? Sure, I don't have a uniform, or a horse, or a sense of fair play,
or even a square jaw, but I'm not so bad, am I? Am I??'

The doctor nodded solemnly. 'Rejection can hurt. Do you think Nell
rejected you because of your life of crime?'

Snidely jumped off the couch and started pacing the office. 'Crime? What
has that got to do with it? I'm an interesting fellow, Doctor. I have
interests and goals! I like trains! Sure, I might have tied her to a
train track a time or two, but it's not because I don't care! I own a
sawmill! I can make explosives! I'm so good with them, you never see them
coming! See!' Snidely whirled towards the doctor, hand outstretched with
a small, round, black bomb.

Dr. Hinkleberry gasped and plastered himself as far into the chair as
possible. 'How did you- It's lit! How did you do that?? Stop it! You
can't blow up my office!'

The patient smirked. 'What? It's just a little bomb,' said Snidely. 'This
much gun powder couldn't blow up the entire office, Doctor, just perhaps
a table, chair, desk, or-'

'Put it out!!' screeched the doctor, slumping down farther into the

The patient chuckled, extinguishing the fuse between two fingers. 'Better
now? See what I mean? I have talents.'

'Um. Right. Well, Mr. Whiplash, it looks like our time is up for this
week. My, how time just flies,' said Dr. Hinkleberry, attempting to
regain his authoritative posture and unstick himself from his chair.
'Same time next week, then?'

Snidely smiled pleasantly. 'Of course, of course. You know, I feel we've
accomplished a lot today, Doctor,' said the patient, stepping towards the
psychiatrist's desk. 'Thank you.' Snidely took the doctor's hand and
shook it energetically.

The psychiatrist looked, and indeed felt, surprised as he shook his
troublesome patient's hand. 'You're quite welcome. I'm glad you feel
confidence in our work here.'

A curious expression, somewhere between a smirk and a grin, crossed
Snidely's face. 'Certainly, Doctor. It's been a pleasure. As the kids
today might say, you're the bomb.'

Dr. Hinkleberry confirmed the next week's appointment and the patient
took his leave.  The doctor leaned back in his chair and reflected on the
session. Snidely Whiplash was a difficult one, to be sure, but the doctor
couldn't help but feel a warm flush of pride in his work. He could reach
even the most troublesome of patients with a little patience and hard
work. Yes, Hinkleberry thought, I can help Snidely Whiplash.

And that's when the couch blew up.


                 The Art of Haemomagick - Maleficia

I haven't written to this glorious magazine in quite awhile so I will
attempt to recap here the introduction I wrote some time ago... in short
form of course.

I was an innocent child, my parents hated me, I fell from a tree after
being hit with a rock, I landed on a glass house and suffered many
lacerations, my parents left me for dead, I learned in my dying moment
how to use blood for magickal purposes and it saved my life.

That was simple wasnt it? I'm sure last time I wrote it, it contained
more of the original emotion of the event which most shaped me.

But anyway the purpose of this article is not to rabbit on about myself
like some dimwitted child, it is to pass on the art of haemomagick, as
I've come to call it.

As some of you know, blood is very powerful in magic, in life, in almost
all things, and if you have seen me you will know me to be most
experienced in bleeding.

Bleeding being one of the crucial components to haemomagick.

Where a normal magician will stand about babbling to himself under his
breath like some maniac my magicks are simpler, I slice a rune into my
flesh symbolising the magickal word I wish to empower, the blood flowing
from that cut becomes blessed with that words power.

I then use that blood to activate the spell, by throwing it, drinking it,
burning it, pouring it over an object.

Most simple..

So remember, you don't have to look like the town moron to cast a spell,
join me in the ranks of the menacing, become the wicked old witch you can

Maleficia, Mistress of Haemomagick!


                  From Prelude Into Symphony, PART III

The stealth ball of red zoomed past the open doorway. A quick turn around
the gilded hall carpet and a skittered dart into a patch of bushy flowers
drew the mission to a close.

From between the folds of an extremely leafy bush came a snout holding a
large bag. Sparky peered about cautiously before dropping the bag onto
the floor. Gently gripping the edge of the bags bottom between his teeth,
he upturned the contents onto the floor and began to investigate them.

First to roll out onto the ground were a quill, a couple of pomegranates,
a very old looking silver ring with red runes, a sprig of dried white
flowers with a sweet light scent, and some varied vials. Neatly folded
from the bottom of the bag up were 2 finely tailored shirts, 1 of silk, a
pair of silken slacks, 1 pair a traveling pants, a dressing robe, a work
shirt, polished black shoes, a nice scarf, and a fine colored strip
Sparky had seen worn about the neck of men. Peeking out from beneath the
pile of clothing was found a sheer, silvery scarf that smelled similar to
MoiraGwyn.. A bit too similar for Sparky to be at ease about it.

With his snout tucked inside the bag, he noticed something strange about
the inner lining. A set of small knives and oddly bladed throwing stars
lined the edges of the inner cloth in places that appeared to be meant to
hold them. MoiraGwyn's bags didn't look like that. Nor did Rowane's.

The salamander took a long moment to decide between sneaking the bag back
where he took it from versus letting the chipmunks take the blame. His
mind was more certainly on the strange new person his Queen seemed to
have befriended. He still did not trust the man. He glanced at the
suspicious bag and nudged it's contents back inside enough for it to not
seem rifled through. He pondered the guestroom he found it in and what
other items he might find in other bags of this man... That would have to
wait, he could try those tomorrow.

As for this one being snuck back into that room, those chipmunks were
nothing but trouble anyways.


                       From Darkness Comes Hope!

'Load portal one.'

'Subject loaded.'

'Prepare for subject time transfer.'

T-minus 10 seconds and counting. 8...7...

There wasn't much left after Final Sunset. Holes in the ground. Rubble
and rock strewn over metal and bone. A sky dark and dismal enough to
inspire insanity in the most healthy of humans...let alone the few tribes
of gibbering mutants left over on the surface.


Some fled underground...into bunkers built in a time before the
earth-penetrating nuclear weapons had been conceived. A few are
considered worthy of seeking out and recovering...the rest are considered
dust or contaminant.


Those deemed worthy were taken to the Belt Colony during Operation
Exodus. The Administration tells me that I was such a specimen...a True
Soldier...whatever that means. I have no recollection of such things. I
have only instincts. And skills. And strange dreams.


They tell me that my mission is to travel to when rather than where. They
tell me that I am the alpha stage of Project Rectification. The
holo-boards have been spewing their propaganda for years now: 'From
Darkness Comes Hope!' 'Better Times are Coming!' I'm not so sure.

'100...200...300...349...erm...subject travel terminated.'

'349? What?'


'Good lord.'

'He can still complete the...'

'I know, I know.'

'Inform the Triad.'

'Obtain coordinates.'

'Godspeed Kousenborg.'

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