Alright, the first repeat performance of this show. A few ground rules that I’ve come up with :
- After toying with the idea of going back to the start of Book 1 every time I die, I’ve made a unilateral decision that this is just too boring for both me and my loyal readers. This will be particularly the case as I reach books 5-7.
- What I will be doing is going back to the start of the book in which I died (here Assassin!).
- I’ll recommence at the start of said book with the same stats and possessions I had at the end of the previous book.
- I will be free to use knowledge gained from previous run-throughs.
- In my descriptions, I’ll gloss over parts of the book that have been considered previously, while still making all necessary dice throws.
So, Avenger! is transported back to the roof of Quench-Heart Keep!
- I again block the top of the stairway and knock the bailiff’s bodyguard down the stairs.
- I dash down the stairs and surprise, surprise, get a crossbow fired at me.
- Fate again smiles on me and the crossbow bolt misses.
- I make my way to the torturer’s chamber, dive into the pool, and emerge into the chamber where I square off against the Elder God.
- I manage to defeat that Elder God, but am reduced to 2 (!!!) Endurance and 4 Inner Force. I won’t recap this battle, because it was just too depressing.
- Whereas last time I travelled to Druath Glennan, I recall that this only ended up in a confrontation with enemy ninjas. This time I decide to jog down towards the Sea of the Star.
Previously unexplored territory commences!
Bloodhounds are on my trail, but I scatter pieces of my poisoned spiderfish (as used on my poison needles, and second cousin to Spider-Man) as deadly treats for the dogs.
It works (to a degree) as only two are left to follow me. My trusty Shuriken tears out the throat of one dog, but the remaining one attacks. I’d be pretty confident if not for having Endurance of, you know, 2.
In an encouraging start, I hit with a Winged Horse kick, doing damage of 8 (the maximum). The dog misses with his jaws, and my follow up kick also connects, sending him to the great kennel in the sky, and leaving my Endurance at a healthy 2.
I run to the sea and swim ‘towards the rising sun’ hoping that this strategy will give my pursuers the slip. My preliminary hopes of finding a surfboard are dashed as I am caught in a whirlpool and dragged beneath the surface. Just as I’m getting ready for Attempt 3 at this book, a merman (!) passes by and creates a globe of air (!) in which I can breathe underwater.
He solemnly informs me that the ‘jackals of the sea have kidnapped the prince of the sea-elves’. He then states that I shouldn’t fear the ‘horned whale’. But I can still be terrified of killer whales without horns, right?
I spy a piece of poisonous coral called ‘Dead Man’s Fingers’, which I realise I can use as a primitive knuckle-duster, sticking the spines between my fingers as I clench my fist. Just in time, as the ‘sea-jackals’ approach.
Aside : This, right here, is why I love these books. Where else could you have a situation where a ninja is underwater, breathing a magical globe of air, while wielding a piece of poisonous coral (called Dead Man’s Fingers, no less) against weird-ass shark / manta-ray creatures?
Luckily my poison-coral punch works, and one sea-jackal dies while the others suddenly remember a show on television that they needed to catch tonight.
A whale with a horn approaches and, remembering the advice of the mer-man, I decline to attack it but rather wait for further developments. As it swims past, I note a crystal dagger lodged in its back. I catch a fin, hitch a ride, put Queen’s Greatest Hits in the stereo and pull the dagger out.
I carry on getting a lift with the narwhal, hoping that it will lead me to either safety or this ‘prince of the sea-elves’.
Stats : Punch Modifier : +1, Kick Modifier : +1, Throw Modifier : 0, Fate Modifier : +1, Endurance : 2, Inner Force 4
Awesome names : Sea-jackals, particularly when coupled with their awesome appearance.