[Book IX, Act II, Scene I. A hotel room. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, HARVEY, JORDAN, a LLAMA and a HAT are here. All but DUR have just appeared. DUR is surrounded by half eaten sandwiches.]

Alice: Dur! [Looks around] Been getting lots of room service?

Dur: No need! People keep leaving food outside their doors, it's great!


Austin : [Examining the hat carefully] Well, I am glad to see you take a personal interest in recycling.


Jordan: [Sounding more irritated] So what was all that we just went through? Some sort of arranged insurance deal to get Chuckles here [points to Charlie] back?


Harvey: [Cheerfully] No, that would be much more painful, time-consuming, nonsensical and less likely to succeed. This was merely a standard operation of the Queens View Party, what?


Alice: [Tastes a sandwich] Tastes a bit like hotel room! [To Jordan] I think it might, maybe Pesty had an insurance policy?


Charlie: [Stubbornly] That couldn't be it. He told me he canceled that! [Crosses her arms, fighting tears] And he can't be dead! He is virtually impossible to kill. We just need to find him and help him. And as for Wilhelmina, you must be mistaken. She is just a child and not capable of-- [vaguely] whatever it is you think she's done!


Jordan: Well if Pestilence is her father, sorry Chucks, but she's half demon, so she's more than capable of it. No matter how nice a guy Pestilence was. Can't believe the old boy is dead.


Dur: [Counting on his fingers] With as many times as members of our group have died and come back, can we be sure that it won't be the same with Petsy= ?

;;; Yay Dur!


Alice: Sorry, Charlie, he's gone. Torn to pieces. And Will, well... she's not really that much of a child.


Jordan: Excuse me for a few minutes guys, I need to go take care of something [pauses] in the bathroom.


Alice: I don't know, Dur. It was a bunch of demons, and there other dimensions, and they did just tear him to tiny pieces. [Reassuringly to Charlie] But he did save the world, so you know, killing you wasn't all that bad. [Looks around] Is it just me or does something about this place seem off? Are we sure we're back in our dimension?


Jordan: [Pauses as he was leaving to find a bathroom] Did you just say Pestilence killed Charlie? His own wife? [Sounding more irritated and now aggravated too] Don't be so bloody absurd!


Alice: [Stung] Oh. [To the others] See? We have to be in a different dimension, Jordie would never be quite so rude!


Dur: You think THAT's absurd? I think THIS [makes a lewd motion indicating Alice's chest] is absurd!


Clint: Eh, he's a poet. Maybe it's just that time of the month for him.


Alice: What's that supposed to mean? [Fidgets uncomfortably] I think there's something wrong with my shirt!


Clint: [Takes a look at Alice and does a double take.] I don't think it's the shirt, Bimbo! At least it explains what the poet's checking on in the bathroom!


Charlie: [Looks around the room] Everything looks reasonably normal to me, but how can one tell if one is in the proper dimension? I wonder if there is an experiment we could conduct?

;;; Hee hee! Clint is being extra-piggish today!


Alice: What do you mean? [Looks down at her shirt] Hey! Is it just me or am I... bigger? [Looks astonished]


Austin : [To Alice] Indeed your bosoms appear to have increased by two sizes over the past hour. [Looks around] Who has Alice's icing likeness? [Checks his collection of icing figures]


Alice: [Horrified] Hey! [Looks at herself in the mirror] What the hell?

[AUSTIN takes out the icing figures. They all look a little smushed from the trip back, and are somewhat stuck together, but there's no obvious correlation between ALICE's one and her new look.]


Dur: As a medical professional I can say with almost 50% certainty that this is not normal! [Dur tries to cast DETECT MAGIC]


Charlie: [Squeals and looks down at her own breasts] Oh, mine seem the same. [Unconvincingly] That's good.


Alice: Mine were perfect* to begin with! [Looks at Dur] Oh, god, he's not going to turn them into frogs, or something, is he?

[DUR casts his spell, but nothing in the room appears to be magical.]

;;; * Debatable!


Clint: Not on purpose, anyway.


Austin : I guess that this may have something to do with Jordan, he did leave rather hastily just before it happened. [Ponders] And he is of a magic casting persuasion.


Alice: I don't think it just happened -- they felt like this almost as soon as we got back. I think we were all too distracted by Charlie, Dur and the llama to notice!


Austin : Hmm, are they still growing? If not, do you really have a problem?


Dur: [Looking thoughtful] Are you suggesting the Llama has something to do with this?


Clint: If it does, we've got a real money-making opportunity here!


Alice: Well, they're not, but, huh, well, I preferred how they were before. [To Dur] I don't know. He does look kind of shifty.

[There's a knock on the door.]


Dur: [Screams like a girl at the sudden knock] Errr... I mean.... Who is it?


Jordan: [Returning from the bathroom, seeming more cheerful] Ah! That feels much better! [Looks over to Alice] By Philli, your tits are huge! Are they real? [With a perverted grin] Can I inspect them and find out?


Alice: [Startled by Dur, then by Jordan] What? Of course they are! And no, it's only official Boob Inspectors are allowed do that.

[A male voice from outside calls out.]

Voice: A scary monster who wants to kill you all. Oh, and I've got coffee and donuts, too.


Dur: [Squeals like a girl again] Coffee and donuts?! [Rushes to open the door]


Charlie: That voice! [Rushes to the door, rudely shoving past Dur]


[DUR swings the door open. Enter PESTILENCE, carrying some newspapers and some donuts. He's wearing his normal leathers, but looks very chirpy.]

Pestilence: Hi gang! Some night last night, eh? [Playfully] Who wants donuts? [Looks at Charlie] Hey there, Charlie.


Jordan: [Excitedly] Oh! Is it someone we know?


Jordan: Pestilence old chap! Good to see you! They said you were dead [points to the others]


Charlie: [Throws her arms around Pestilence, overjoyed] Oh, darling! I knew you couldn't be dead! [Gives Pestilence a steamy kiss]


Harvey: I say!


Clint: He was. I say we give 'em a few hours to catch up. Preferably not in our room!


[PESTILENCE returns the kiss, and it goes on and on. And on.]

Alice: Oh for crying out loud. Let's have some donuts.

[Everyone has some coffee and donuts. Eventually, the kiss finishes.]

Pestilence: [Gasping for air] I am dead. Torn to tiny shreds while saving the world. [Eats a bit of sandwich] In pretty dashingly heroic way, actually. [Munches the sandwich] Hm, tastes a bit like hair.


Jordan: So if you are dead, how are you here?


Austin : You are looking very well for a dead person. Did you find Will by any chance?


Charlie: [Swooning] And you certainly feel quite alive [demurely] if you take my meaning. [Suddenly worried] Yes, darling, have you seen Will? The group seems terribly confused by her recent behavior, and we really should set them straight.


Clint: [Snorts.] I think we *all* take your meaning, Sarge.


Pestilence: [With a big grin] Isn't it obvious? I'm [pauses and gives a burp] uh, sorry, but that sandwich was a bit weird. Anyway, I'm an angel!


Jordan: Didn't you tell me once you had been an angel before being a demon? [Excitedly] So what happened, dying while saving the world redeemed you and you got your wings back? [Even more excitedly] Oh! Does that mean little WIlli is now half angel instead of half demon?


Charlie: [Excitedly, to Pestilence] Is that what happened?! How wonderful!


Pestilence: Yep, now I'm on the side of good. Smitin' evil and being all pure. [Looks at Alice] Nice boob job.

Alice: Hey!

Pestilence: Unfortunately, I can only stay in this dimension for a few minutes.


Jordan: [Starts eating a donut] Well you too better get on with that [finger quotes] catching up [gives them a wink]


Charlie: [Crestfallen] Only a few minutes? But we haven't even discussed Will yet! Have you seen her? There have been some unkind suggestions that she has been [mildly] misbehaving.


Clint: I don't think he's got long enough for that. [To Pestilence.] So what brings you here?


Pestilence: I came to get Charlie. [Holds his hand out] Come on, we need to find Will. She's skipped this dimension.


Charlie: [Takes Pestilence's hand] How did she do that?! [To the party, hurriedly] Do forgive me, group! I must make sure she is safe, of course.


Jordan: [Makes a grab for them both] Oh! Take us too! We can help!


Pestilence: Sorry, Jordan, it's just us!

[There's a flash of light and the two of them disappear, just as JORDAN makes a grab for them.]


Dur: Why aren't we all going?


Clint: It's a parent thing, doc. But look on the bright side - means more donuts for us!


Jordan: [Flailing with grabby hands as they vanish] Well damn! [Stumbles in to the wall] So, now what?


Austin : Well, has anyone here, apart from Alice experienced abnormal growth in any part of their body [To Clint] Please keep it to 'abnormal' growth.


;;; Tom's in bed!

Clint: [Gives a leer] Depends on what you mean by abnormal!

Alice: Ew! [To the others] How long will they be gone? That's so rude!

[Another flash of light, and CHARLIE appears.]


Jordan: Wow, Chuckles, that was quick. Did you find her?


Charlie: [Unhappily] Not exactly. We think we know where she is, but we cannot get to her. We hope that perhaps Mother and Grandmother could help us understand her state of mind, so I really must go to Bodenringham Manor as soon as possible.


Austin : Out of interest, how long were you gone for, from your view point, and which dimension were you in?


Alice: Good question, Aus! Surely it was longer than it seemed for us. I mean, Dur had hardly any time to eat disgusting second hand food!

Dur: [Through a mouthful of hair sandwich] Mat's mright!


Charlie: It was more than a year for us, so time moved quite differently there! [Wails] Oh, how could things have gone so wrong for poor Will?!


Harvey: [Shrugs] She's probably just at that sort of age, what? Now, let's see about lunch, eh?


Alice: So, where is she?


Charlie: In another dimension, though I'm not sure why. [Guiltily] Though I suppose it is not outside the realm of possibility that she saw her father kill her mother and then watched him get ripped to pieces by an inter-dimensional horde.


Alice: Who knows? Kids are always rebelling. Why, I once stuck my tongue out at Daddy when he threatened to cut my allowance.


Jordan: That is, disturbing, yet typical of a typical daddies girl [ruffles Alice's hair]


Charlie: [To Jordan, gratefully] Thank you for making my issues seem so normal compared to yours! [To the group] Now, Pestilence was called back to his duties, so I was rather hoping you might accompany me to the Manor. [Looks at the party expectantly]


Austin : Why, I am sure we would all be glad to accept your invitation. We should probably leave immediately.


Dur: As long as they have food I'll go practically anywhere!


Alice: [To Jordan] Yes... Daddy! [To the party] Hey, why don't we get Jordan to come with us? He'd be just great at helping find Will!


Charlie: [Skeptically] How? By using-- [with faint disbelief] poetry?


Dur: [Looking dubious] I don't think you know the meaning of the word 'great'.


Alice: You weren't there... you don't know what it was like! We were sharp, as sharp as knives, and we were so gung ho to lay down our lives. We came in spastic, like tame-less horses, we left in plastic, as numbered corpses! Jordan's a hero, a real life hero! Tell them, Aus, tell them he's a hero!

;;; Out for an hour!


Austin : No.


Clint: I can't believe I'm saying this, but I agree with the lawyer!


Jordan: You really think I'm not a hero? And what is wrong with my poetry? I could write something poetic about you if you like?


Alice: There once was a stinky called Clint, who's Mom was a skanky old bint, she auditioned for a part, but gave a big fart, and squirted out a mint!


Clint: Now that's just hurtful, Bimbo. [To Jordan.] And no offense, but writing a poem about how manly you are isn't gonna help!


Dur: [Listening to Alice intently] And?! Who ate the mint?!


Jordan: There once was a bimbo called Alice, who Clint disliked with such malice. He took that farted mint, for she'd called his mother a bint, and made her drink it from a chalice.


Alice: [Gets all pale] Well. I see. [Narrows her eyes at Jordan] That's how it's going to be, is it? [Takes out a notebook] FIne, Jordan, you're going on my list of enemies. [Writes something down] You'll be sorry, oh yes, you'll be sorry.


Charlie: [Incredulous] You people do realize my darling daughter is in grave peril, don't you?! Is this really any time for vulgar rhyming games?


Clint: Can't we do both?


Alice: [Shows the notepad to Jordan] Only joking! Look! [Shows her notepad, which reads "I reele like jorban", and yes, there are cutesy lovehearts over the i and j]


Jordan: [Looks like he is going to puke when he sees the notepad] I'm with Chuckles on this one.


Clint: Hey, at least she's writing! Anyway, to Charlie's house!


Charlie: [Relieved] Wonderful! [To Jordan, warmly] And you may call me Dr. Parker-Kensington.


Austin : Or Chuckles. I like 'Chuckles'. [To Jordan] Poetry in one word.

;;; out all day today


Alice: So Jordie's part of the gang?


Austin : I believe that recruitment it up to the colonel. [Nudges Harvey]


Charlie: [To Jordan, ignoring Austin] Yes, do please come along, but hurry!


Alice: Yay! Jordan's on board! Now come on, there's not a second to waste! Let's just get some new bras and go to the Manor!

;;; End of scene, next one coming up at 2PM!

Sent from my BlackBerry smartphone from Virgin Media

;;; I'm out all day too by the looks of things

Sent from my BlackBerry smartphone from Virgin Media


[Book IX, Act II, Scene II. The Streets of Dementia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, HARVEY


[Book IX, Act II, Scene II. The Streets of Dementia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, HARVEY and JORDAN are here, having just left the hotel.]

Alice: Yay! It's cool that we're in Dementia, it's the funnest city in the Realms! There's always something fun going on. [Points at a large crowd across the street] Look, I bet those people are having an impromptu party!


Charlie: [Watches the crowd warily] Possibly, but that is all the more reason to avoid them!


Clint: [Already heading that way.] Aw, c'mon, Sarge. We must leave no stun unturned in our quest to help Wil!


[This is clearly no party, rather an aggressive crowd, who are all very agitatedly waiting for someone to address them from a stage.]

;;; out for 40 mins


Clint: [Looks at the stage for a long moment, then shakes his head.] Nah. Better not.


[One of the people in crowd, a creepy looking guy with a sandwich board that says "The Abyss is Nigh", approaches the party. This is KAVID JORGESH.]

Kavid: Ready for the end of the world?

<P><a href=http://www.queens-view.com:83/wiki/index.php/Kavid_Jorgesh>Kavid</A>


Charlie: What makes you think the world is ending? I have it on good authority that my beloved husband prevented just such a calamity quite recently!


Kavid: That just delayed it! [Pauses] Wait, who's your husband?


Charlie: [Proudly] Pestilence Sotot! [A bit haughtily] Why, do you know someone else who recently saved the world?!


Kavid: He didn't save it, he delayed its destruction! The Abyss is Nigh!


Charlie: [Offended] He did too save it! [Suddenly] Wait, what is the Abyss?!

;;; That's my three! So loooonely!


Jordan: [To Kavid] And just how do you know he didn't save the world? Where is your proof lad?


Kavid: Hey, I'm a believer, I don't need your so-called proof, if indeed it may be so-called, which I don't believe it can be, because I haven't seen any proof. The Abyss is what comes next. It is what replaces this so-called world.


Jodan: From whence does this belief of yours originate. What if you turn out to be wrong? What if the world really has been saved?


Kavid: From The Books! And we're not wrong, what about the last days of Queens View? Didn't that tell you anything?


Jordan: Which books? How can you prove you are not wrong? And how can the last days of Queens View tell me anything when they have yet to happen? Finally, what is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?


Kavid: The Books! I don't need to prove, I believe.

Alice: What about the rest of the questions? What happened to Queens View?

Kavid: It was totally destroyed in a judgement from God because of all the buggery, prostitution and drug taking that goes on there.

Alice: [Dreamily] Ah... Queens View!


;;; Post #16 made 3 for me too by the way


Austin : [Dreamily] There is no better place!


;;; John is out

Harvey: [Dreamily] The cake shops!


Dur: [Watching Alice, Dom, and Harvey] Now is not the time to be day dreaming!


Austin : [Snaps out of his daydream] Cake shops? [Glances at the others] Yes, of course, cakes. Well, perhaps this odd fellow here is referring to the Fatebook?


Alice: I bet he is! You there! Odd fellow! Are you referring to the Fatebook?

Kavid: No, The Abyss.

Alice: No, what book talks about The Abyss.

Kavid: The Abyss.

Alice: I think someone should punch him on the nose!


Charlie: [To Kavid] I see. And where would one find a copy of this book?


Dur: [Looks startled] You mean... You don't know? Shameful! I thought you were the scholar of this group! Shouldn't you know where to find some dusty = old tome?


Charlie: [Unhappily] You're quite right! I fear I have been most neglectful of my reading. [Firmly] After this, we must all go to a library, and we shall stay there until I am quite caught up!


Jordan: We likely have a copy back at the university. And no, Chuckles here is not THE scholar of the group. [grins mischievously at Charlie]


Kavid: [Scornfully] Nobody knows where The Abyss is, but there are dozens of translations around. Dozens. [Whistles nonchalantly] Dozens. Well, you know, it's not really for us to interpret The Books, is it? I mean, come on!

;;; Out for an hour!


Clint: Oh no, Sarge. YOU can go to a library and catch up to us when you're caught up.

Hello all,

I've already discussed this with Conor, but the rest of you are probably wondering where on earth I've been for the past few weeks. It's true that lately I've simply not had the time to post as much as I'd like - I write this in the hour or so I have while my colleague sorts out a piece of work I've been waiting on. Of course this will happen from time to time, but the number of times when I get pulled into something unexpectedly and Harvey kind of stares off into space vacantly, like me whenever someone combines the words "Jennifer" and "Lawrence" in the same sentence...

Ahem, anyway... It's become clear that I can't be around to post for any significant portion of the day, and I don't think this is likely to change. It's a combination of new projects at work, and my other half moving in with me (which Conor suggests means I'm not a geek anymore - I'd tell Kirsty that one, but she might die from laughter). While both of these are Good Things(tm) they have created this situation, and I feel that carrying on in this vein would be grossly unfair on the other players - you guys.

I've truly enjoyed being a part of Queens View and I thank you all for that opportunity, so it's with a heavy heart that I have to say goodbye and wish you all the very best - at least for now.

Best Regards John


Alice: Hey, didn't Deucie have The Books taken off him by Aussie's girlfriend? [To Jordan] Deucie was my fiance. My husband killed him, but I killed my husband and ate his brain.


Jordan: So you married the guy you killed your fiance, then ate his brain? Nice. So who is Aussie?


Clint: Guess that means we should go find the lawyer's girlfriend after we save Wil and before we leave Chuck in a library. [To Charlie.] I hope you're writing all this down!


Charlie: [Scribbling furiously] Do be serious! Of course I am!


Alice: [Points to Austin] The well dressed guy who's going to get us access to The Abyss.

Kavid: Gear! When do we leave? I'll get the Converts to come too.


Harvey: What the hell are the Converts? Some sort of fish, I'll wager, eh? Bah!

;;; John is off the list now


Clint: Sounds more like a sheep to me. [To Kavid.] And no, you can't come with us.

;;; I actually like the idea of Charlie showing up at home, cult in tow!


Charlie: [To Kavid] He's right, I'm afraid. Mother detests drop-in guests.

;;; Hasn't the poor woman been through enough?!


Jordan: What about walk-in guests?

;;; NEVER!


Alice: Or people turning up uninvited to family reunions with the still beating heart of a baker?


Charlie: [To Alice] Well, I [emphasis] did tell him not to attend, as you may remember! [Dreamily] Though he did behave quite dashingly that night-- [grimly] well, until he hacked my father to pieces with a family heirloom. [Dreamily again] But now he's an angel, just as he was always meant to be!


Austin : [Glances briefly at the other responses to this] Well, that's all super. Now all we need to do is find the gateway to the abyss, and convince the gate keeper to let us in.


Jordan: I think the first task then should be to find the key master.


Austin : [To Jordan] Huh? It's the same guy, the gate keeper has the key. He would not be much of a gate keeper without the key, how would he let people in?


Alice: Oh, Austin! Surely you've seen Hostmusters? Everyone knows it's two different people!

Kavid: You don't have to do anything. The Abyss is coming. It is inevitable.


Jordan: [Smugly] Thank you Alice!


Austin : [Rants] Hostmusters is no more than a poorly made, factually incorrect, and childish rendition of our ancient and wonderfully wisdomful mythology [Casually lights up a cigarette in a very long cigarette holder] There was no key master, just a gate keeper. I don't think there was even a lock. The gate keeper was the kind of sorcerer that other sorcerers didn't want to mess with.


Jordan: Only because he was tapping that ass. Actually, Aussie, you are right. There is no Key Master, only a Key Mistress! [Does a ridiculous victory pose]


Charlie: [Watches Jordan, horrified] Do stop that. It is entirely inappropriate behavior, given the nature of the information we are currently receiving from this delusional lunatic. [To Kavid, brightly] No offense.


Alice: I think I'd be a very fine Key Mistress!

Kavid: You're all wrong! There is no gate to The Abyss. You don't go to The Abyss. The Abyss is coming! It will replace the world as we know it!

;;; Gone for the weekend, more Abyss talk next week!


Kavid: None taken! Elephants like me always keep their trunks hidden. [Taps his nose knowingly]

[Enter JARED JONES, a dramatic looking man dressed in leather. He strides onto the stage to rapturous applause.]

Jared: [Holds his hands up to quieten the crowd] My friends. The Reveal has begun.

[Everyone, including ALICE cheer and whoop.]


Austin : I really don't like the look of him!


Charlie: [To Alice] Why are you clapping? How do you know this is a GOOD thing?!


Alice: [Self consciously stops clapping] Er, sorry, I just got carried away with the crowd's enthusiasm.

Harvey: [Glares at Alice] Fucking idiot.


Charlie: [Taken aback] Colonel! [Scolding] Really, we all try to not draw attention to Alice's shortcomings, so do play along! [To Alice, patting her head] It's all right, dear. We still care for you very much.


Last from heather 47

Alice: [Stung] Hey! Forgive me for being enthusiastic!

Harvey: Let's just kill this guy.


Austin : [Shocked] Colonel, are you feeling alright? Perhaps you are hungry and we should all go and eat?


Jordan: Yes Colonel, Aussie is absolutely right! You do seem not quite yourself sir. Perhaps something dairy to get the brain juices flowing properly again?


Charlie: Indeed! [To Harvey, in a low voice] We cannot simply attack.


Jordan: [Nods then speaks as if he is repeating a quote] One does not simply walk up and kill someone.


Clint: Well, not most of the time, anyway. [Looks around for the nearest eatery.]


[There are a few cafes dotted around, none of which look particularly appetising.]

Harvey: You idiots. Are you just going to stand around here listening to that drivel? [Shouts at the stage] What do *you* know about the Abyss?

Jared: [Looks coldly at Harvey] I know that it's coming for you, fat boy.

[Some of the crowd start to jostle the party.]


Dur: [Defending Harvey] Really? This is where we draw the line? After all this group has done?


Clint: [To the crowd.] Don't mind him, it's a blood sugar thing. [Propels Harvey in the direction of the most unappealing cafe.]


Charlie: [To Dur] Do be serious. He could get himself beaten up--or worse!


Harvey: [Turns and punches Clint in the face] Get your hands off me!


Dur: Colonel! Misdirected rage is hardly the answer!


Clint: [Holding his nose.] Why would you do thad, golonel? [Backs off and leaves Harvey to his own devices.]


Austin : [Worried, backing off] The colonel is clearly unwell! Mr Scar, perhaps you can put the colonel to sleep, and we can get him to safety?


Harvey: Unwell? Coming to his senses, you mean! Put to sleep? Why? So you can interfere with me, you god damned arse bandit? And what would he have to do? Just stand near me so his disgusting odour would knock me out? [To Dur] Yeah, misdirected rage is not the answer, but directed rage? [Punches Dur, knocking him into a bunch of cultists] Yeah! Now that's what I'm talking about!

Jared: [Points at the party] See how the unbelievers panic and fight amongst themselves? See them off!

[The pushing and shoving gets worse; the party are clearly about to be overwhelmed.]


Charlie: [Horrified] Colonel, you must stop this at once! Hurry, we must get out of here! [Tries to grab Harvey and pull him out of the crowd]


Clint: [Very regretfully attempts to cold-cock Harvey and drag him away from the crowd.]


Harvey: Why? Is your demon husband in a rush to produce another murderous offspring?

[CLINT smacks HARVEY, but he dodges away surprisingly quickly.]

Harvey: [Shoves Jordan out of the way] Move, fag! [Leaps onto a horse and shouts to the crowd, pointing to the party] Look out! These non-believers think that they can stop The Abyss!

[He ploughs through the crowd, trampling on several of them.]

Alice: Haaaarvey! [To the party] What the hell?


Austin : Let's go! [To Alice, trying to duck out of the crowd with her] He has changed, a bit late, but quite comprehensive! Perhaps this is related to the same source as your mammary growth? Did you always want bigger boobs?


Charlie: [Stunned] He must be ill--or perhaps possessed! Hurry, let's try to follow him!


Jordan: [Picking himself back up after being shoved] I think right now perhaps we should concentrate on saving ourselves and hunt down the Colonel later. [Uncharacteristically puts an arm around Alice] Are you okay? That must have been horrible coming from him of all people.


Alice: I don't know, Jordie, it's just weird -- he's never like that, is he, Aus?

[The party come to a very nice looking carriage, parked in the middle of the street.]


Clint: I hate to say it, but I agree with Charlie. After all, Harv would do the same for us if he weren't getting old and senile.


Jordan: Well what do you think we should do Alice, get out of here and find him later, or chase after him now? Either way, we should take this very nice looking carriage. Perhaps it is the one that demon who had us kill Pollyanna said was waiting for us?


Alice: I think we should follow him! I know he was a bit weird at times recently -- you know, like when he tried to kill that waiter and all -- but I'm really worried about him!


Jordan: [Opens the carriage door] Come on then troop [cheerfully] let us sally forth and rescue our commanding officer from, well, himself!


[An angry mob of cultists charges towards the carriage as JORDAN opens the door, only to jump, startled, as COLIN PHILIPS, a taxi driver, pops his head out.]

Colin: 'ello mate! What's all this then, eh? Got a little bit o' lubbly jubbly, eh? A bit woah... a bit wee? Eh? Eh?


Clint: [To the party, urgently, and doing his best to ignore Colin.] Everybody in!


Austin : [Slips into the carriage, flicking his cigarette away as he does so. Frowns] What in the name of Hell has gotten into the colonel!


Colin: [Blocks the party] Me old chinas! What's all this then?


Charlie: [Baffled] We know nothing about your china, but we really must be going. Do step aside, there's a good man!


Colin: I'm on hire, innit? You gotta find some other cab.

[The mob is dangerously close, although fortunately moving suspiciously slowly!]


Charlie: [Looks at the mob and gasps in cartoonish horror. To Colin] Look, they're coming for you! You'd better hide in one of these alleyways. We'll cover for you, don't worry!


Colin: No need! I go this blanket here, I can hide under that! [Gets back into the carriage and hides under a tiny blanket that barely covers his head]


Charlie: [To Colin, brightly] Wonderful! [Tries to hop in the driver's seat] Hurry, group!


[Everyone loads in, with CHARLIE taking the coveted driver's seat. The mob gather around and start shaking the carriage.]


Austin : [bangs the ceiling] Step on it driver, and don't spare the horses!


Charlie: [Starts up the carriage] Indeed!


[CHARLIE revs up the horses and the carriage ploughs through the crowd.]

Alice: Aw man! I love ploughing through crowds!


Charlie: [Delighted] It was rather exhilarating, wasn't it?! Hang on, group! I shall take us to safety!


Alice: But that's my thing! I always take us to safety!


Charlie: [Patiently] No, you take us to certain and irrevocable doom, largely due to your careless carriage driving!


Dur: [Looking thoughtful] That's odd, I always thought it was the other wayaround and that you enjoyed crowds plowing through you!

;;; Slut!


Jordan: Dur! That is no way to speak of or to a lady! Now Alice on the other hand {chuckles a little] but still, bad timing good sir, given her uncle just went wacko on her.


Alice: Of course they'd plough through me if I was the other way around! [Thinks for a moment] Hm. Hey!

[The carriage bursts out through the town gates, with the last remaining cult members falling off as it does.]

Kavid: Damn them! They're getting away!

Jared: They can't escape The Abyss. Now, come on, I have some virgins to defile.

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up


[Book IX, Act II, Scene III. Outside Dementia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR and JORDAN are here, along with COLIN PHILIPS, who's hiding under a blanket.]

Alice: What the hell just happened?


Jordan: That? The town gate. Before that? An angry mob that has formed a doomsday cult.


Austin : [To Alice] Your uncle finally came to his senses.


Charlie: [To Austin, surprised] How so?


Alice: Good question! [To Jordan] That is NOT how Uncle Harvey behaves. He hardly EVER punches Clint, and he certainly doesn't call me a fucking idiot!


Austin : [Sighs] No, of course he did *not* come to his senses, he was clearly stark raving mad! [Sighs] The point being, is, that what happened to Harvey is far more important than the fact that we just drove out of town, or that there is yet another lunatic cult forming. The colonels behavior, the recent growth of Alice's mammary organs, and the 'abyss', are of far more concern.


Alice: True, although, I do look even cuter than before. [Poses for the party, causing a button to fly off her shirt and ricochet around the carriage like a bullet] Oops! Sorry!


Jordan: Well after we find Harvey and go to Charlie's manor, perhaps we should stop by the university to check the library for any mentioning of the abyss, see if there is anything of value in what this cult are claiming.


Alice: Agreed! [Points forward] Looks like there's only one way he could go. I mean, it's not like a horse can travel over fields and things, right? Right?


Jordan: Depends on the length of the grass or crops I guess [looks out the carriage window to see the height of the fields]


[Definitely low enough for even the teeny tiniest of horses to get over. Any fool can see that.]

Alice: What do you think? Could a horse get over that?


Charlie: [Assessing the situation sagely] Naturally, it depends on the horse, but I suspect most horses could, yes.


Jordan: Okay then, who out of you all is the best tracker? We should watch the road for his tracks veering off in to the field just in case.


Alice: Tracker? You mean like, leaving footprints in the snow and stuff? Uh, I guess Clint, because he's got the biggest and stinkiest feet.


Jordan: Close Alice, I meant the best at spotting the tracks left by others, like the hoof prints of your uncle Harvey's horse.


Alice: Don't be silly, Jordie. There's no snow here!

[The grass seems reasonably undisturbed.]


Jordan: Excellent! Then forward we go! Perhaps he is already on his way to the manor? Anywhere know where this road actually leads?

;;; That's my 3


Charlie: [Skeptically] I don't believe he would go to the manor, given the rude goodbye he gave us. [To Alice] Has he a [finger quotes] happy place he might have gone seeking refuge, such as a vacation home in some quaint sea-side town?


Alice: Dementia is a quaint seaside town!

;;; It's not. It's a seedy city with a busy port frequent by hookers

and rough 'n tumble sailors


Jordan: I think Chuckles meant somewhere other than home, a vacation spot maybe?

;;; I thought that was what a quaint seaside town was? I live in one, kinda...


Alice: Oh, no. Only in Queens View -- that's a long way from here, though, but if we're heading to Apraxia, we could easily swing by there.

;;; Apraxia is where Bodenringham Manor is

;;; It wasn't like that until YOU moved there!


Jordan: Didn't they say Queens View was totally destroyed? Perhaps Alice is right, we should check to see if it was or not, for confirmation purposes, [To Charlie] wouldn't you agree Dr Parker-Kensington?

;;; Actually I was born here!


Clint: Maybe he's off home to visit his sainted wife as she... uh... helps the poor misfortunate in Queen's View?

;;; Swamped today - old friend from uni in town for the day.


Alice: Good point, Clint. She's probably administering to the sick right now; maybe building some shelters or working in a soup kitchen. [Thinks] Although, given that she's a hooker, she's more likely somewhere swanky giving blow jobs for money.

;;; Out until 2PM Thursday!


;;; Happy 41st Birthday Conor!


Austin : [Nods in agreement] They are pretty good [Blushes profusely] Gosh! I mean I heard they were good.


Alice: Quickly, Charlie! I think Colin's dying!

Colin: Uuurgh!


Charlie: Oh, if only we had a doctor! [To Colin] Do try to hang on!


Clint: That's what happens when you shoot people with buttons, Bimbo! You could put someone's eye out!


Austin : Dr Dur, can't you do something for him? [Austin checks Colin's vital signs]

Alice: Austin! That's the most inappropriate thing I've ever seen! You should be ashamed of yourself -- asking Dur to treat an injured man! [To Clint] And it wasn't me, Stinky, it was those monks!


Last from Heather and Tom

Dur: You DO have a doctor! [Tries to cast a hasty healing spell on Colin]


Austin : Who the hell were those monks anyway? What was that weird emblem they wore?


Alice: Yeah, but she's only a PhD, they're worth nothing!

[DUR casts the spell, and it seems to slow the bleeding. COLIN is unconscious, but apparently out of danger.]

Alice: I don't know, Aus -- some sort of snake?


Austin : Indeed, a snake eating it's own tail. Typical doomsday cult. The colonel obviously knew something that we don't. That worries me greatly. [Looks pale]


Charlie: Perhaps, but he clearly was not in his right mind, even by the usual low standards by which we judge him. He would never abandon us like that!


Clint: End of the world cults are the worst! I say we try and take one alive next time, find out what the heck they're after and how we stop them!


Alice: Who wasn't in his right mind?


Charlie: [To Alice] The Colonel!


Alice: What? What the hell is that got to do with anything? What are you talking about?

Jordan: What are any of you talking about? [Points to Colin] And what happened to him?


Clint: But what could have done that to him, and what's the connection to Alice's new rack?


Charlie: [To Alice, baffled] Were we not JUST talking about the colonel's extraordinary behavior?! [To Austin, in a low voice] Perhaps Alice is also not feeling well?


Austin : [Does a double take at Jordan] What do you mean 'what happened to him'. The monks shot the life out of him! We are all lucky we're not dead!


Alice: No! We were talking about getting Colin to a proper doctor before Dur kills him, after those monks shot him!

Jordan: What monks? What are you guys talking about?


Clint: [Exasperated.] The monks who shot Colin! [To Austin and Charlie.] Is it just me, or is half the party going nuts?!


Austin : Indeed we were. [Frowns at Alice, then Jordan] The colonel just rode out of town, after shouting at us in a very angry, hostile and uncharacteristic way, and then as we left town in this carriage we were attacked but a band of monks, which is how Colin was grievously wounded, yes? [Looks at the rest] Does everyone agree? [To Jordan] Have you been smoking cheese or something?


Dur: Sounds about right! Though you left out the part where I heroically saved Colin's life just now, but whatever!


Jordan: No, I haven't been smoking cheese, but I'm starting to wish I was! What monks?


Austin : [Slowly to Jordan] You remember that about ten minutes ago we were engaged in a furious battle with approximately 10 monks?


Clint: [Nods in agreement.] He's telling the truth. We even had to let Alice drive for a while, and you know we wouldn't do that if we weren't desperate!


Alice: [Nods] I am awful!


Charlie: But Alice didn't drive, I did!


Alice: I certainly did! [Points at a huge crack in the windscreen] How do you think that got here? And what about him? [Points over the side to a hopefully dead badger that's being dragged along]


Charlie: [Looks at the crack in the windscreen] Well, it certainly does look like YOUR work, I must admit! [Does a double-take, looking at her hands and arms.] Wait, where did I get all of these cuts and scratches?!


Jordan: I thought the crack was from the button? Hang on, who's driving now? And where did that badger come from? I'm so confused.


Alice: Charlie's driving! That's why we're going so slowly! We hit the badger when I took that shortcut across the field to get away from the monks. That's why you've got cuts and scratches, Charlie!


Jordan: What in the realms are you talking about woman? There were no monks. We never went across the field!


Dur: Hmmm.... Perhaps Jordan and Charlie both need to make appointments to have their heads examined? Don't fear my friends, the surgery is mostly pai= nless and my survival rate is nearly 4%!


Alice: You survive nearly 4% of your surgeries? That's higher than your patient survival rate!


Jordan: Must have a hell of a resurrection deal going on then


Charlie: [Hands on hips] I must say, this is rather a cruel and absurd joke you're all playing! Do stop pretending I don't remember things properly at once.


Jordan: Charlie! Hands on the wheel woman! I know we're going slow but we could still crash!


Dur: I wonder if Alice's idiocy has become contagious...


Alice: Hey! I don't know what that means, but I know I don't like it!


Austin : I do know what it means, and I don't like it either. Something very odd is going on. We clearly remember fighting the monks, and Colin here bares many wounds, and Charlie has alot of nasty scratches, so why don't Charlie and Jordan remember? [Looks around for danger]


Jordan: Plus Alice remembers driving through the field, but Charlie has been at the wheel the whole time and we never went through the field, only talked about it. I haven't got any scratches or wounds or memory of any monks. With Harvey's strange behaviour, and Alice's increased chest size, I'd say something is very off. Oh, and don't forget the symbol you guys mentioned the monks bearing. A serpent wasn't it?


Alice: Yep, a serpent eating its own tail.

[CHARLIE jams on the brakes and the carriage skids violently to a halt, sending everyone flying.]

Alice: What the hell? What's up?

[Everyone looks out of the carriage to see what looks like a huge scoop of land, a perfect circle of about 50' diameter, has simply disappeared. Anything on the edge of the circle has been sliced completely in half, including one unfortunate who's bottom half is on the road in front of the party. From the trousers, it is unlikely to be HARVEY.]

;;; Note! If you haven't been explicitly told, your character does

;;; NOT recognize that symbol.


Jordan: At least it isn't Harvey. Poor bastard, whoever he is. Perhaps we should investigate, see if we can find out who he, or she, was.


Austin : [Hops down from the carriage carefully, and pulls the legs away from the hole. Searches the pockets if there are any] What a terrible way to die!


Charlie: [Hops out of the carriage. Whips out a notepad and marvels with equal parts horror and delight] Oh, how dreadful! What could have done such a thing! And what shall I title the book I will soon write about it?!


Jordan: [To Charlie] 101 ways to die in Demntia maybe? [Gets out of the carriage and helps Austin inspect the body]


Alice: How about "Getting to the bottom of it"?

[AUSTIN finds a few GP but nothing of any particular interest. Judging by the size of the legs, this was probably a man.]

Alice: What the hell could have caused this?


Jordan: That's a good question. Charlie, do you remember reading up on anything like this back at the university?

;;; More to the point, would Jordan have read about anything similar

to this? Or could Nikki have and mentioned it to either of them?


Charlie: [Patiently] No, but that is only because I have not written my book, of course! [Warily] Why, are you angling for a co-author credit on my book?


Dur: [Inspecting the body] This man is dead!


Alice: [Surveying the perfectly smooth edge to the part of the ground that seems to have disappeared] I think you mean OUR book!

;;; The only thing this reminds any of is The Core, which is a slice

of the Realms that disappeared because something

;;; that happened in there was so awful. It was, of course, when the

party went back in time and defeated Seth with

;;; Pestilence's help (he was originally an angel), and Charlie had to

stab him through the heart and turn him into

;;; a demon to finally defeat Seth. (Book VI, Act VII)


Jordan: [To Charlie] Well, since you made the offer, sure, why not.


Austin : [Peering into the pit] I suggest that we get as far away from this as possible.


Alice: Is it changing? I think it's changing -- is it getting bigger? I think it's getting bigger!

[It is most definitely not changing or getting bigger.]


Charlie: [Looks at the pit appraisingly] No, it does not appear to be growing, but it does remind me of The Core. [Worriedly] Perhaps something dreadful happened to create this!


Alice: But where the hell are we? I can't make any sense of this map!

Clint: That's not a map, is a badly drawn square.

Alice: It's not a square, it's a smiley face!

[A conveniently located signpost suggests that the party are close to Insomnia.]


Charlie: Perhaps you could all go into Insomnia to see if anyone knows what has happened here! In the meantime, I shall conduct experiments to ascertain the nature of this pit! [Picks up a rock and prepares to toss it in the pit]


[The rock lands in the pit and rolls down, suggesting that the edge of the pit is solid and smooth.]


Austin : Given the bizarre phenomena that we are currently experiencing, I suggest that we stay together at all times. [Looks around for other clues]


Alice: Agreed! If one of those weird time things happen again we'd donkey.


Charlie: [Puzzled] Donkey?


Alice: [Waves her hands mysteriously in front of her] Oooo-oooh! Time dilation effect!


Austin : [To Alice] Could you explain to us what time dilation effects you have experienced? [Looks around] I have not seen a donkey.


Dur: [Looks skeptical] I'm not sure we WANT to understand the reference.=20


Jordan: Anyone else getting that feeling that we are meant to go down there? [Looks at the pit then helps Austin search for clues]

;;; Been looking after an ill friend today, forgot to tell you last

night when I emailed you Conor


Alice: Oh, Aus, I'm just funnin' with you! I haven't experienced any! [Peers into the pit] Yeah. I'm not sure I want to get into that!


Clint: Well, I'll take a look down there if one of you guys has a rope or something so I can get back out!


Charlie: How deep is it? [Tosses another rock into the pit]

;;; Can we tell how deep it is?


Dur: Alice is the math genius right? Can't she calculate the depth based onhow long it takes a rock to hit the bottom of the pit or something?


Clint: Anyone got a light so we can see what's at the bottom?


Jordan: [Reaching in to his pocket] I've got some matches


Alice: So you're going to throw a lighted match in and expect me to see how deep it is?

[It is about 25' deep, and the diameter of the part that's flush with the ground is around 50'. It is extremely smooth.]


Clint: Any of you nerd types got any ideas here?

;;; I suppose there's nothing down there, that we can see?


Alice: I'm awfully glad you asked me, Clint, although, strictly speaking, I'm more of a geek than a nerd. We could... go around it! I mean, sure, we can't get the carriage through the rough at the side of the road, and we'd have to walk the remaining half mile to Insomnia, but .. wait a minute! Walk? [Gibber] It's the end of the world!


Charlie: [Disappointed] It's only a hole? Yes, I quite agree, let us continue on to Insomnia at once.


Alice: On foot? Or are we going to try and drive across it?


Austin : [Pondering] Perhaps we could jump it. Build a ramp. [To Alice] What would be the optimal slope of a ramp, and the optimal speed to get the carriage over?


Alice: Faster than the carriage is capable of doing!


Austin : Perhaps one of the magic users can make the carriage float across?


Charlie: [Firmly] We shall walk. It will do you all good!


Austin : [Folds his arms] It's a death march! We'll never make it alive!


Alice: I know! It must be nearly half a mile away! It's crazy, crazy I tell you!


Jordan: Half a mile? Dear lord I'll be in agony by the time we get there!


Charlie: [Dismissively] Do be serious! That's hardly even the distance from the D section to the Q section in the Harbridge Library!


Jordan: I am being serious! Oh, sorry, I forgot only Nikki knew out of you all about my accident [grumbles]


Alice: [Starts stomping through the undergrowth] Library! Oh, God! Are we going to have to read?


[Book IX, Act II, Scene IV. The Streets of Insomnia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR and JORDAN are here, having endured an almost twenty minute walk. The town is mid-sized, and the streets seem reasonably busy.]

Alice: So... tired....


Austin : A death march with torture! [Rolls his eyes] The world is ending!

[The party head off on the long and arduous journey, slowly making their way through the undergrowth.]

Colin: [Pops his head out of the carriage] What's all this then, eh? Come on, lovely jubbly!

Alice: Run away! Run away!

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up!


Jordan: Seating....need...seating...


Charlie: [Invigorated to a rather obnoxious extent] But that was a wonderfully refreshing walk! Oh, if only we could walk a bit further, but there is just ever so much to do!


Alice: [With a huge sweat stain on her back] Maybe we could just lie down in the gutter here?

;;; There have been some updates to the website, including a new front

picture with

;;; Jordan added, a new map page in the Wiki, and we've got rid of

that obnoxious

;;; :83 part of the URL.


Jordan: Sounds good actually. Or the pub!


Charlie: Well, it would be useful to ask around about the sinkhole, but pub dwellers are likely to be unreliable witnesses if they are alcohol-impaired. Perhaps we could look for a local headmaster?


Jordan: Oh Chuckles, even if there tales are slightly off or somewhat far-fetched, all tales start from some form of the truth. Even the most unreliable of sources can invaluable.


Austin : Why would a drunken headmaster be any more reliable than a drunk in a bar?


Alice: Speaking of unreliable sources, how about this guy? You think he'd be unreliable enough?

[She points at FLETCHER "FLETCH" HATCHER, a shirtless man lying in the gutter.]

Fletch: [Does a peace sign] Dudes, I'm like, totally the guy for far-fletched tales!


Jordan: [Excitedly] Ah, excellently spotted Alice! [To Fletch] So, what can you tell us about the massive crater about 20 minutes walk from here?


Fletch: Aw, reek! There's another one? That's totes crate!


Dur: Because they call him headmaster? Do titles mean nothing these days!=20

;;; Conor, can you send me the website address again! I haven't checked it in years because my work's web filter blocks it

;;; but now I can check it.


Clint: [Carefully.] You mean this sort of thing happens all the time around here? Including the whole cutting a person in half thing?


Fletch: No! Just this once, well, twice. The first time it was closer though, just five minutes walk from here, on the road back to Dementia!

;;; Shame on you, Kevin! It's http://www.queens-view.com/


Charlie: How extraordinary! How did it happen? Was there an accompanying noise, for instance?


Fletch: Sure was! [Does a disgustingly liquid sounding sucking sound]

Alice: If it's only five minutes away, how come we didn't see it when we walked in?


Clint: Because we walk 4 times slower than normal people?


Jordan: Clint makes a valid point.


Austin : It's not just slower, it is more 'carefully', than other people.


Clint: And most people probably don't get lost as often as us, either. Or stop to do their nails.


Alice: Hey! Aussie stopped almost as often as I did!

;; No posting from me tomorrow!


Jordan: Yes, to do his hair.

;;; Awwww


Clint: *And* his nails.

;;; At least, I picture Austin looking at this awful trek and stopping

to give himself a mani/pedi. =)


Austin : Perfection comes at a price. [Checks his nails] Not that you would know anything about perfection, Mr Scar.


Jordan: [Groans and shakes his head] Do we really have time for this right now?

;;; Sorry I thought it was a day off too with Conor saying there would

be no posts from him today.

;;; Also, the numbers seem to have gotten mixed up today.

;;; Corrected the numbers to what they should be.


Alice: We always have time for witless and pointless arguing.

;;; It was supposed to be a day off, but when it looked like Austin

was trying to leave

;;; the party I thought I should try and calm things down!


Dur: Sometimes it seems like that's ALL we have time for!

;;;Austin always seems like he's trying to leave the party! Maybe he's the smart one!


Fletch: Dudes! Stop spoiling my Fletch! What about this crater?


Charlie: [To Fletch] We have only just discovered it ourselves, and we are not certain what it means. I suspect it will take weeks of research! [Goes all starry-eyed] We must go to the nearest university library AT ONCE.


Austin : [Surprised] Do they have an extensive reference section for craters?


Charlie: [Confidently] Certainly, any respectable university library should have an extensive collection of books on geomorphology and such. [Unreasonably excited] Oh, how I have LONGED to spend time studying the earth sciences! What a wonderful opportunity.


Austin : [Shakily lights a cigarette in a ridiculously long holder, but does not blow any smoke rings. Soberly] Let's hope the earth lasts long enough to study it.


Alice: Oh, god. A library?

Fletch: I can take you there! There's a really, really smart man working there. He'll be totes helpf!

;;; Things went off the rails yesterday, so we're have to ignore all posts from

;;; Kevin's 2.3.91 to Tom's 2.3.104 inclusive. I'll edit the log to reflect this


Charlie: [Eagerly, but cluelessly] Wonderful! I could always use another tote!


Alice: So where is this genius?

Fletch: He's not a genius, he's just really smart. He's probably in the bar right now.


Charlie: [Disappointed] A bar? Are you sure he is really intelligent? Studies show that people in a state of drunkenness often deem their peers to be more intelligent than the measurable results of an I.Q. test would indicate.


Fletch: I'm not in a bar and I think he's more intelligent that the thing you said!


Austin : But have you been drinking?


Fletch: Not since I threw up in the bathroom!


Jordan: [Laughing slightly] And how long ago was that?


Dur: [Hopefully] Perhaps he needs medical attention? It seems like ages since I have performed an operation!


Charlie: [Alarmed] Are you mad?! We do wish to keep the poor man alive, don't we?


Clint: Not particularly, and anyway, have a little faith in the doc. Practice makes perfect and all that, and a man's got to start somewhere!


Jordan: How long has Dur been practising medicine? And I'm guessing practising is the appropriate word given how you all react.

;;; That's it from me today. Physiotherapy in half an hour so need to

make a move


Fletch: Cool! I'd go for an operation! What've you got?


Clint: The great thing about Dur is that you can never tell until he finishes!


Fletch: Sup! [Gets on his hands and knees before looking back over his shoulder] Do you think you give me an ass lift?


Charlie: He will if you will take us to the man you told us about, won't you, Dur?


Austin : A bargain if ever there was one!


Clint: Act now on this limited time offer!


Fletch: [Leaps to his feet] Totes! Come on, I'll take you to his house. And by house, I mean where he lives!

[FLETCH moves two feet to the left of the bar and knocks very softly on the house next door.

Fletch: [Whispers] Can you guys keep a secret?


Dur: Oh! An ass lift! That's an easy one! If you were to tell us what we wanted to know...


Charlie: One of yours? Certainly!


Fletch: This is where the Professor lives!


Clint: Oh, well, then he probably already knows Charlie and there's our in!


Charlie: [Flattered] Indeed, Mr. Scar! My influence is wide-spread in the academic community. [To Fletch] Who is this [finger quotes] Professor?


Fletch: Shush! Don't go telling everyone that the professor lives here! He's made all sorts of fantastic inventions that people would kill for! He once made a telephone out of coconuts!


Austin : Quite remarkable. Did it catch on?


Fletch: Dude! It's totes fant!

[The party look at him blankly.]

Fletch: Yes. It did. He uses it to call me all the time.


Austin : Oh! He means totally fantastic! Totes fant! It's not a foreign language after all!


Clint: That's totes ridic!


Fletch: [Gives a massive fart] Totes flatch!


Charlie: [Appalled] So, you are NOT giving us free tote bags? [To the party] Then how on earth will we carry all of the research we collect at the library?!


Austin : How disgusting. [Knocks on the door of the house] Let's see if he's in.


Alice: [Suppressing a huge grin] Oh no!

[The door is swung open by PROFESSOR GILL GILLIGAN.]

Gill: I wouldn't say genius, but who am I to argue with the public? Who!


Clint: The Professor?


Jordan: Ah yes, but Professor who?


Gill: Professor Gill Gilligan, that's who! Won't you come inside? I've made some delicious coconut pie!


Jordan: [Excitedly] Oh! We'd love to! Thank you! I can't remember the last time I had some decent coconut pie! [Enters]


Austin : [To Gill] I am Austin Sleaze, and these are my colleagues [Introduces the others. Offers to shake Gill's hand]


Charlie: [All business] Professor Gilligan, we have just arrived in town from Dementia, and we were quite alarmed to see the large sinkhole that has formed just outside of town. Do you know anything about it?


Gill: [Shakes Austin's hand] No! Nothing! Not a single thing! Come on in and I'll show you my notes!

[Enter the party.]

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up


[Book IX, Act II, Scene V. Professor Gill Gilligan's House. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR and JORDAN have just arrived in, escorted by GILL. There is a strong smell of coconut pie and the place is covered in coconut shells, but the main room is dominated by a massive white board that has "Big Creater Things" written across the top. The board is otherwise completely blank.]

Alice: Surely that's not how you spell crater?

Gill: [Turns away for a moment] Damn you, Fletch! I knew it should be an oh!


Jordan: I don't know about an oh but there certainly shouldn't be an e!


Charlie: [Looks at the board. Turns to the party] Well, we are clearly wasting our time here!


Gill: No! I've got all this coconut pie! And I can tell you where there's another crater!


Jordan: And let's face it, we haven't ate in how long?


Austin : There is another crater? Do you know of more, or just the two, are where is the other one?


Gill: That's all that my team and I have heard of, but just you wait until the next conference on Science and Stuff! Boy, I'll cause a splash then!

Alice: [Picking up some pies and passing them to the party] Going to present some boring results?

Gill: No, I'm going to present some super interesting results and then push Alastair Finley into the swimming pool!

Alice: [Bites into the pie with a hard crunch] Ow! What the hell is in this pie?

Gill: Coconut!


Charlie: [Outraged] You are not fit to clean the pool filter after Dr. Finley takes a nude midnight dip!


Dur: Perhaps we should move this along before they start measuring how longtheir degrees are.


Gill: [Shocked at Charlie] The last time he took a nude dip the filter had to be replaced!

[ALICE fishes a whole coconut out of the pie.]

Alice: What the hell?


Charlie: [Surprised] You really DO know Dr. Finley! How?!


Gill: [Face turns dark as he turns and looks out the window] I presented my coconut telephone at the annual Conference on Science and Stuff last year. The place was packed... everyone wanted to hear me speak. I was brilliant -- you can ask Fletch, he said, and I quote, "Totes Brill". And then, then Alistair Finley happened.


Jordan: [Inspecting his pie after Alice bit in to hers] Aren't the coconuts meant to be [shakes his head] nevermind. [To Gill] So what did old Ali do?


Gill: He said that the coconut phone was one of the stupidest things he'd ever seen! He said that the cord connecting them was [sarcastic voice] an inch long.

Alice: How long was the cord?

Gill: [Normal voice] An inch long.


Clint: [Nods.] You can see where he'd say that, then, couldn't you? Do you know where the crater came from?


Gill: [Annoyed] No.


Clint: [Suspiciously.] Do you, in fact, know any more about the crater than anyone else around here?


Gill: Of course I do! [Laughs] Of course!

[There's a brief silence.]

Gill: Of course. [Looks down, embarrassed] No. Actually, I don't really know much about it at all.


Charlie: [Hopefully] Are there any real scientists in town, then?


Jordan: Now do be fair Chuckles. Just because he doesn't know anything about the crater doesn't mean he is not a real scientist. [To Gill] Now, let us start with, what are you actually a professor of?


Clint: [Still suspicious.] Coconutology, yeah?


Gill: [Defensively] It's actually general Fruitology, if you have to know!


Jordan: [To Charlie] See! It's not that he isn't a real scientist, it's just the crater is not his area of expertise! [To Gill] So, do you know when the crater appeared? [Takes out a notepad to start keeping a record of what is said]


Gill: [Pleased with Jordan's defence] Indeed! The first one appeared a few hours ago, and the other one just within the last hour. I'm thinking of calling them Gillcraters, or maybe Gillinghams. What do you think?


Charlie: [Helpfully] Gillholes, I think. [Briskly] Now, where can we find a proper scientist? Surely you are not the best Insomnia has to offer?


alling them Gillcraters, or maybe Gillinghams. What do you think?

Dur: [Nervously] You don't think more are going to just suddenly appear do you?=20


Clint: If one does, we'll be the first to know, thanks to the miracle of the coconut phone! C'mon, guys, let's go find a more competent kind of quack.


Austin : There are ducks at the pond in the park.

;;;awa hame


Gill: Hey! I'm the smartest man in Insomnia!


Clint: [Glances at Fletch.] That's totes plaus!


Fletch: [Looking in through an open window] Sure is!

;;; Fletch was outside!

;;; No posts from me until 2.30PM


Charlie: [To Gill] Yes, well, could you direct us to the nearest university library at least?


Gill: [Hangs his head sadly] Yes, it's in Acedia.


Austin : We shall have to find a carriage. I am NOT walking!


Alice: How far is Acedia?

Gill: About sixty miles.

Alice: Don't be so lazy, Aus! We must have walked sixty miles from the other side of the crater on the way here. Surely we can walk another sixty!


Austin : [Checks his nails] The crater is about half a mile away. Acedia is 120 times further. It would take us several weeks to walk there. Let's go and find a totes lux carriage.


Alice: Maybe it would only seem like weeks because you're such a joy to be around?


Austin : [Crestfallen. To Alice] You don't want to drive a totes lux carriage?


Alice: Of course I do, I just would enjoy spending more time with you because you're such a bundle of joy! [Beams happily at Austin]

Gill: I suppose Fletch could drive us. I mean, you. I mean, it's okay for me to come, right?


Charlie: [Regards Gill skeptically] Well, would you promise to be VERY quiet and feed Dur little chopped up bits of coconut?


Gill: Sure! I'd promise anything!


Clint: Just like Dur! Alright guys, let's go.

;;; It's a holiday here in the States, so possibly no Kevin today.


Austin : Aww, thanks Alice [Gives Alice a big hug]


Alice: [Steps back from Austin] Hey! [Gestures to her boobs] No testing the merchandise!

[Exit ALL.]

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up


[Book IX, Act II, Scene VI. The Carriage. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, JORDAN, FLETCH and GILL are here.]

Gill: [Points to a huge number of enormous boxes and tea chests] Right! Each of you grab a chest and hoist it high above your head. Fletch, you drive, and I'll sit in the back, making notes about our journey!


Clint: [Suspiciously.] Is that some kind of fruitologist humor?


Fletch: No! Gill's totes imp! You have to earn his respect. I had to let him punch me in the stomach every day for the first two months I knew him before I was an equal partner.

Gill: You're not an equal partner, you're an assistant.


Clint: [Nods.] I see. [Takes a seat, on a box if necessary, and prepares to sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.]


Charlie: [To Fletch] You should be grateful. That's a better arrangement than most post-docs get!


Alice: Hey! Are we supposed to walk behind the carriage carrying these boxes?

Gill: Yes!

Alice: What's in them?

Gill: Boxes.

Alice: There are boxes in the boxes?

Gill: Where else would I keep boxes!


Clint: Screw that! You feel up to jacking a carriage, Bimbo?


Alice: Sure thing! [To Gill] Gasp! I think there's some really nerdy science thing around the other side of the house!


Charlie: [Gasps, super excited] Where? What is it?! [Goes to look]


Alice: Sonofa!

Gill: Hey! I'm more interested than she is!!! [Leaps out of the carriage]


Charlie: [Attempts to take the drivers' seat] Hurry group! Let us take the carriage to go see the marvel of science! He cannot outrun this carriage.


Fletch: [Holding firm in the driving seat] In the back! I don't mind ditching Gill, but no takes the Fletchmobile!


Charlie: [Reluctantly takes shotgun] All right, but do hurry!

;;; That's my three!


Austin : [To Charlie] Besides, it is better for insurance purposes if Fletch drives.


[FLETCH floors the accelerator and the carriage zooms off, just as GILL starts heading back, carrying a stick and a piece of string.]

Gill: This is all I could find, and I don't think they're nerdy and sciencey at all -- hey!

Fletch: We gonna check out the other crater?


Austin : [To Fletch] Totes!


Fletch: You guys are totes coo!

[The carriage zooms through Insomnia and soon comes to another huge crater, roughly the same size as before. There are a few houses dotted around, one of which has been sliced clean through, so that half of it is still standing.]


ound, one of which has been sliced clean through, so that half of it is still standing.]

Dur: I wonder how many casualties these craters have caused?


Austin : We really should find out who is missing. There may have been someone in the very center that was being targeted for some reason.


Alice: But this isn't the only crater -- this is the second one we've seen, who knows how many more there are? [Points at Fletch] This guy?

Fletch: Not a chance!

[A woman, HARRIET HATT, looks out from the house that has been cut in half.]

Harriet: My bathroom! My beautiful bathroom!

<P><a href=http://www.queens-view.com/wiki/index.php/Harriet_Hatt>Harriet Hatt</A>


Charlie: [To Harriet] Hello there! Are you someone important, by any chance? We need to know for our investigation!


;;; Drew is out for a few days

Jordan: What sort of question is that, Charlie? Of course she's important!

Harriet: And I need to pee!


Austin : [To Harriet] Once you have relieved yourself we would like to ask you a few questions about the crater and related events, if possible?


Harriet: But my bathroom! My beautiful bathroom is gone!


Clint: [Supremely unsympathetic.] Try a catalog and some bushes!


Charlie: [Equally unsympathetic] But after we have a chance to question you! Please, we must know what happened here. Do tell us all you know. [Encouragingly] You seem like a simple woman, so it should not take long!


Clint: [Inspired.] It's an insurance thing. Might help you rebuild that bathroom! So try to be precise and complete!


Harriet: Oooh! Of course! Why didn't you say so! Well, one minute I'm about to take a pee, because I'd had a lot of tea to drink, which is unusual for me, you know, seeing as how I'm allergic to tea and all, but having that onion hanging from my belt always makes me thirsty. Then, I pulled down my pants and realised that there was a huge hole back there.

;;; Insert disgusting joke here!


Clint: [Nods.] I see. Lawyer, this sounds like it might be right up your alley. As it were.

;;; Sigh.


Charlie: [Shudders. To Harriet] Right. Very little of what you said was in any way sensible. Have you a neighbor who comes around to help you with the daily tasks you find challenging, such as placing your shoes on the correct feet and such? [To the party] Perhaps such a person would be more helpful to us.


Clint: [Admires his own moth-eaten footwear.] Eh, it doesn't really matter which is which.


Austin : As long as you don't take them off, Mr Scar!


Clint: [Apparently genuinely puzzled.] Why would anyone do that?

;;; I imagine Clint has sort of Al Bundy socks, a la

;;; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_BJ7-_-omnU#t=2m46s


Alice: For the love of God, Austin! Don't be putting ideas in that empty head of his!

Harriet: [Offended] What is wrong with you people? I'm perfectly capable of putting on my shoes! Half my house disappeared, while I was about to go to the toilet.

Alice: [Sniffs the air and then lifts up her shoe] Ew!

Harriet: Okay! While I was going to the toilet, but I want compensation!


Austin : [To Harriet] Then you will need to help us find the culprit, otherwise the insurance company will deem this an act of god. [Gets out a notepad] When did you first notice that half your house had disappeared, and when did you last use your bathroom?


Harriet: I noticed when I was using the bathroom!

Alice: And when did you last use the bathroom?

Harriet: When half my house disappeared.

Jordan: What day and time did this happen?

Harriet: Yesterday evening.


Charlie: Intriguing! Have you any idea what caused this? Did you hear or see anything unusual? Other than the obvious?


Harriet: Nothing! Not a single thing. [Thinks] Oh, there was a man with weird goggles and no pants who said that he had heard something similar had happened in Invidia. Then he ate all my apple pies and urinated in the garden. On the blackberry bush.

Alice: [Face covered in blackberry stains] Ew!


Charlie: [To Harriet, suspiciously] Weird goggles and no pants?! Was he unusually hairy and extraordinarily brilliant?


Austin : [To Harriet] Did you hear anything unusual? Did the man with weird goggles have any strange machines or devices with him?


Harriet: He was definitely very hairy, and he had loads of strange machines with him. He said he was measuring energy. I asked him why and he told me that my blackberries contained a dangerously high level of urine.


Charlie: [Reeling] He was HERE? When? Where did he go?!


Alice: Who is this guy?

Harriet: I think he went to Invidia -- that awful HARMA woman went there too, but he left as soon as she arrived.


Charlie: Alistair Finley, the Father of Cryptozoology! [Fans herself wildly] Oh, group, this is so thrilling. We must go to Invidia at ONCE. What an honor for all of you, to meet such a great mind!


Austin : What was the HARMA woman doing?


Harriet: Not letting me go to the toilet, that's for sure! She was ordering people around and measuring things.

Alice: Hm. Who in HARMA do we know that might fit that description?

Jordan: I'm sure she was very nice. You know, she was only doing her job. The more people investigating this, the better.


Austin : Indeed, it sounds as though she was highly competent and efficient. We should catch up with them as soon as possible.


Charlie: Correction! We need to find Dr. Finley. Clearly he is attempting to undo some great damage caused by HARMA!


Austin : It sounded more like they are working together to solve the mystery.


Alice: Wait a minute! Is this Aussie's girlfriend? The one who stole the books off Deucie?


Charlie: Perhaps, but Dr. Finley would not be working with HARMA. He is far too free-spirited for that.


Austin : It does sound like her efficient, conservative approach. Why don't we try to catch up with them and find out?


Dur: So we're off to Invidia now? [Whining] But we just got here!


Fletch: Being adventurers is totes rad!

Alice: Are we going to Invidia with these groupies? [Gestures to Austin and Charlie] Or to Apraxia? There's probably more urgency about these holes right now, I suppose.


Charlie: [Shakes her head firmly] No, you are quite right, we MUST go to Apraxia first and not allow ourselves to be dazzled. We must locate Wilhelmina as a matter of urgency. In any case, Grandmother and Mother were both Watchers in their day, and they may even know something about these craters.


Austin : Let's get moving then. The longer we dilly-dally here the further behind the competition leaves us.


Alice: Well, that's not what I mean at all, but I guess we should go to Apraxia.

[Someone is approaching on horseback, from the direction of Invidia.]

Harriet: But what about me? What will I do? Where's my insurance money?


Clint: Hear that horse? [Nods.] Special courier. We're efficient! [To the party.] Right, let's go!


[The horse charges into town, and the party can see that the rider is a nun, SISTER MARY UNITS. She pulls up in front of the party looking very dishevelled.]

Units: There is no God!


Clint: What about Phili? Nice guy, when he's not busy killing babies.


Charlie: [Nods] Indeed, we have met a deity or two in our time, rest assured! But what has shaken your faith?


Units: The convent! It has disappeared!


Clint: So when you say "there is no god," you *mean* "there is no convent."


Austin : [Stubbing out a cigarette] Is there, perchance, and large crater where the convent used to be?


Units: Actually, there's mostly no convent. There's no god because why would he let this happen? I mean, I can understand poor people starving to death, and old people dying horribly, but nuns? Everybody loves us!


Units: Yes! Right in the centre!


Clint: Don't think of it as a tragedy, think of it as an opportunity to build a newer, better convent.


Units: How can you be so heartless? So many are dead! Some cut right in half, others missing limbs!


Charlie: [To Units] How dreadful! Where did this happen?


Units: About 20 miles north east of here, towards Invidia!


Charlie: [To the party] We had better hurry to Apraxia! Who knows how many more of these craters have appeared all over the realms?!


Jordan: Wouldn't it make more sense to go towards Invidia? After all, the people investigating it are heading that way?


Austin : Indeed, it would.


Alice: Well then, to Apraxia at once!

Fletch: Uh, Invidia?


Charlie: [Reluctantly] Very well, I suppose Will shall have to wait a bit longer. . . .


Units: You people must be crazy! The world is going to end!

;;; Out for about 3.5 hours!


Charlie: Well, it IS all rather disconcerting, but there is not real evidence to suggest that the whole of the world is going to end. But, just to be safe, we shall investigate! [To the party] To Invidia, group!


Austin : [Checks Maplin briefly before getting into the carriage] I do hope the Invidia tailors have not been disrupted by a crater.


Dur: Who's going to be driving this crazy train?


Fletch: Me! I'm totes craze! So, you guys know these mysterious investigators, huh?


Austin : Most probably, although we have not been able to confirm there identities.


Charlie: Although it is almost certain that the hairy man in goggles is Dr. Alistair Finley. I am, ah, [suddenly flustered] RATHER well acquainted with him.


Fletch: Totes secr!

[The carriage zooms off.]

Harriet: I still need to pee!

Units: There is no god!

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up!


[Book IX, Act II, Scene VII. The Road to Invidia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, JORDAN and FLETCH are here, racing along.]

Alice: Oh, God, Charlie! He's not another demon, is he?


Charlie: [Giggles girlishly] Oh my, no! [Goes all dreamy] We shared a beautiful night once that changed both of our lives forever. . . .


Dur: [Rolling his eyes] Probably working on some extensively boring research paper...


Alice: Yeah! Like on Ziptocrewology, or something!


Austin : It must have been so romantic. Was there a full moon?


Charlie: [To Dur, haughtily] It was NOT boring! In fact, it turned the field of [to Alice, pointedly] Cryptozoology on its head! [Smiles at Austin, starry-eyed] No, it was a new moon, and we . . . [coyly] but I really shouldn't tell you absolutely everything. It wouldn't be decent.


Austin : Good. [Looks relieved. To Fletch] Are we nearly there yet?


Alice: Or interesting! Not like the first time Deucie and I were together... [goes all dreamy]

;;; Of course, Deuce got her drunk, had his way with her and then

framed her for murder!


Charlie: [To Alice, groaning] Do be serious! We were there, remember? It was dreadful, not to mention the start of a rather appalling affair that ended rather badly for everyone involved, as I recall. [Abruptly] Not like my SEXUAL RELATIONSHIP with Dr. Finley! [Looks around expectantly] That's right! We had intercourse! [Smugly] Didn't see THAT coming, did you?


Clint: Bimbo, he got you drunk, had his way with you, and then framed you for murder!

;;; Seemed somehow appropriate.


Alice: That's just what Deucie said! [To the others, by way of explanation] I was quite drunk at the time.


Alice: Wow, you just don't have a romantic view of the world at all, do you, Clint?


Charlie: [Disappointed] But isn't anyone surprised by my shocking revelation?! [To Alice, explaining] It goes quite against type, wouldn't you say? Therein lies the surprise.


Clint: [To Alice.] No, I don't. [And to Charlie.] And no, I'm not.


Alice: Yes. It was a big surprise.

[The carriage begins to slow down.]

Fletch: Guys! The road is totes blocked!


Charlie: [Tries to look ahead] Can't we just go around or something?


Austin : [Sighs] What is it this time [Looks out of the window]

;;;awa hame


Fletch: It's a HARMA roadblock!


Dur: [Groans] Not these guys AGAIN! [Looks at Charlie] Say, maybe Charlie can sleep our way through them...

;;; Ha!


Clint: Or maybe she could give them a lecture about cryptozoology and put them to sleep? Oooor we could just smash our way past it!


Alice: Or maybe Austin could sleep his way through it!


Charlie: We haven't time to sleep our way through anything! I agree with Mr. Scar, we must charge past.


Alice: Oh please! Surely we've got five min- uh, I mean, yeah, I agree!

Fletch: Totes blocked!


Clint: Oh, all right. Let us out so we can get that roadblock moved. Chuck, get your best cryptozoology stories ready!


[There are half a dozen HARMA agents dotted around, including TOMPARS PARIS, an officer with whom the party have had many dealings with. These usually result in some horrific injury for TOMPARS.]

Tompars: [Holds a hand up to the party] Halt in the name of HARMA!


Charlie: [To Tompars, hiding her face with her hair] Greetings, er, stranger! What seems to be the trouble here?


Tompars: It's top secret, all very hush hush. On a [somewhat proudly] need to know basis.


Austin : So you don't know, and they have not told you? [Sighs] As long as it is not another crater,


Tompars: If they hadn't told me, then how would I know that it actually is a crater?

Jordan: Maybe you might have seen it?

Tompars: Didn't.

Alice: Maybe you saw some graffiti in the toilet about it?

Tompars: Didn't. I was too busy.


Charlie: [To Tompars] Right, now that that's sorted, might we get past? We have a rather important, ah, conference to attend.


Tompars: No! No one's getting past! There's some real top brass people here today. I can't mention any names, but some real important people. Very high end. Very, very important.


igh end. Very, very important.

Dur: If you can't tell us their names how do we know they are really high ranking?


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Jordan: Ah, excellent. So Dr Finlay has already arrived then? We were worried we'd get here before him and he wouldn't be able to tell you that we are expected [readies his lute to cast Charm Person if needed]

;;; Like a "these are not the droids you are looking for" scene, with

Jordan as Obi Wan, and Tompars the Storm Trooper. Haw!



Tompars: It certainly isn't Finley! It's someone who works for HARMA. Some very, very important. And who's a bit of a bitch.

Alice: Oh. Well, I guess it's Joe Nunpar then?


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Jordan: Oh, so not who you were talking about earlier? The girlfriend of Aussie?



Tompars: It certainly was NOT Colonel Nunpar! He's not a bit of a bitch!


Austin : [Indignantly to Jordan] Excuse me! Amelia is not a bitch. Apologise immediately!


Charlie: [To Jordan] He is quite right. Amelia is far too dull to truly be a [finger quotes] bitch.


Austin : Well thanks for your support Chuckles!


Charlie: You are quite welcome, Mr. Sleaze. Fair is fair!


Fletch: Wow! Are you two doing it, or something?


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Jordan: You would certainly think so. [To Tompars] So you going to let us pass or what?



Tompars: [Folds his arms defiantly] No! No one else is getting through, certainly not after what that really hairy scientist with the small bladder did.


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Jordan: Oh him, I bet he urinated on the blackberries [Casts Charm Person] But that would be nobody else getting through, but us.



Charlie: [Trying to be casual but failing miserably] Oh, you mean Dr. Finley? [Twirls her hair with her finger and giggles]


Austin : [Sighs. To Tompars] Let us through or we will let Charlie tell you about her all of her sexual encounters.


Tompars: [To Jordan] Sure, but you guys are the last to go through!


Dur: [Grumpily] That never works when I do it! Perhaps we should move alonggroup.


Fletch: Cheer up, bud! If you peed on some blackberries, I wouldn't let anyone near them either!


Austin : [To Tompars] We should get going then, we don't want to keep you any longer, I am sure you have important work to do!


Clint: Yeah! Oppressing the peasants doesn't just happen without a lot of hard work from fine men like you and your crew here!


Topmars: Not really. The others don't let me get involved in the oppression much, they say that I'm too bor- oh!

[The carriage drives past.]

Fletch: Totes bore! [Pauses and looks back at the others] Unless you want to go back and punch him in the stomach?


Charlie: That would be terribly satisfying, but we really must be on our way. [Modestly] No doubt Dr. Finley could really use my help.


Clint: [Wistfully.] Yeah, I'd like to punch that guy right in the gut, but business before pleasure.


Charlie: Oh, how thrilling! Perhaps we can throw together an act and join?! [To Alice] You could be the Bearded Lady!


Dur: [Mouth watering] Perhaps we should have a taste to ensure it is stale enough.=20


Austin : Undercover biscuit auditors! How stale is your biscuit? Are you enjoying it?


Clint: [Looking miserable.] Not having any fun here, don't worry.


Alice: Noooooooo!

[A passing HARMA officer, CHOCO LATAY, looks over at the party.]

Choco: [Eating a stale looking biscuit] What's all this then?


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Jordan: What was the last law they made? If it's fun it's illegal?



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stale enough.

Jordan: Good idea inspector Dur. I believe that is your area of speciality, is it not?



Clint: That's the *only* law they've made!


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Dur: [Holding out an expectant hand] Indeed!



Charlie: [Gives an undignified snort] True, but they only like paperwork and absurd regulations! [Hesitates] Though, of course, sometimes paperwork IS necessary and useful, to be fair.


Austin : I think they banned nice biscuits.


Alice: Sorry, Aus, whatever they do, they're doing right now! [To Charlie] Great idea! We can shave some of that hair off your back and make a fake beard for me!


[The party approach a huge tent in the distance. It is clearly big enough to completely cover one of the craters.]

Alice: Hurrah! The circus is here! Let's point and laugh at the freaks. [Points and laughs at Clint and Dur]


Choco: Oh. Actually, it's not a biscuit at all. It's a coaster. [Hands it over] Say, how did you guys get this prime gig?


Charlie: [To Fletch] Oh, indeed! Who doesn't love a circus!


Austin : I shall be the ring master, I have the perfect outfit and tophat and I am pretty handy with a whip.

;;;; go on!


Last Dom #55

Alice: Ring master? Whoo!

[The carriage pulls up beside the tent.]

Fletch: What do you want, guys? Are you checking out this place?


Alice: HARMA probably don't!


Clint: We looked like we'd have the least fun doing it, of course!


Austin : Indeed, we detest field work. Cold, wet, muddy, all the bumpy roads, late nights....


Austin : [Giggles] I wonder if they can do tricks?


Choco: Sure, but at least you have the satisfaction of stopping other people from having fun. You know, with the shining of flashlights into their cars while they make such dirty, dirty love. Such disgusting women, with their flouncy skirts and stocking tops visible... [Goes all wistful for a moment] Er, but anyway, what are you doing here? There's nothing to see here. Not a single thing out of the ordinary.

Alice: What about the big tent?

Choco: [Blushes] I don't know what you mean!


Clint: [Suspiciously.] You're not running a circus in there, are you? You know the rules about circuses...


Charlie: [Sternly] Indeed! Most frivolous! We really must take a look at once.


Choco: Oh! The tent behind me? Oh, no, that's not a circus. That's classified. On a need to know basis. If you really had any business here, you already know, and I'm not going to tell you what you need to know.

Alice: Oh for God's sake! How on earth can we tell you what we need to know if you don't tell us what we need to know? Without knowing what we need to know we can't know if we needed to know if we really needed to know, you know?

Choco: No.


Clint: And do *you* know what's in the tent? There's regulations about that, you know!


Choco: Of course I do. And no, asking me to prove it by telling you won't work. Now, unless you can tell me what's in there, I will call security.


Charlie: [To Choco, in a low voice] One of those dreadful craters, of course! [Briskly] Now, do let us in at once.


Austin : [To Choco] Well, what are you waiting for? Do you want to gain a reputation for your time wasting inefficiency?


Choco: [Steps back to let the party pass] Sorry, sir! Please! Go on ahead! Don't eat any of the strawberries, though, just in case!


Charlie: [Excited] Oooh, why?! Have they a peculiarly high urine content?


Choco: [Looking a little sick] I hope not!


Charlie: [Flustered, but all business] Er, quite right! That was a, uh, test! [To the party] Come along, group, let us enter the tent!


[Book IX, Act II, Scene VIII. The Tent at Invidia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR and JORDAN are here, having entered the tent. It completely covers another crater, which is essentially the same size as the previous ones, with quite some space to spare. In the spare area, many HARMA officers mill around, and the party can see AMELIA standing to one side, examining a large board.]

Alice: Typical HARMA! Stealing the crater for themselves!


Austin : So greedy! [Rolls his eyes. Walks smartly over to Amelia] Hi gorgeous, how are you?


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Jordan: [Quietly to the party, while Austin is over there talking to Amelia] I take it that is his bitch girlfriend?



Charlie: [Nods and whispers] She is the girlfriend, yes, but too dull to be a bitch, as you might remember.


Amelia: [Looks Austin up and down] Please don't take that over familiar tone with me. You shouldn't even be here!

[The various HARMA officers watch in horror.]


Austin : [To Amelia] Yes, well, there are a great many places that I should not be, but one has to be somewhere. And, to be fair, I am not nearly as over familiar with you as I would like to be. [Gestures towards the board] However, the Abyss is coming, and we have three too many un-explained craters to investigate. How are you progressing?


over familiar with you as I would like to be. [Gestures towards the board] However, the Abyss is coming, >and we have three too many un-explained cra= ters to investigate. How are you progressing?

Dur: Did he just say he wanted to inspect Amelia's three craters? [Turns a bit green]


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a bit green]

Jordan: Oh Dur, don't be so absurd! He said he wanted to inspect her mothers three craters.

;;; Out for an hour



[One of the HARMA officers, SIMON BISLEY approaches.]

Simon: Mr. Dr. Swatell-Hollis, should we arrest them?

Amelia: First, my name is Sawtell-Wallis; second, it is Dr., not Mr. Dr., and third, there is no need, you may simply remove them.

Simon: But all the other witnesses are being rounded up and imprisoned!


Austin : [To Simon] Are you questioning a direct order from a superior officer! Do you know what the punishment is for this level of insubordination?


Simon: No, sir! I mean, no, Dr. Sir!

[The party can see that there is a large map on a board in front of AMELIA.]

Amelia: [Gives the party a dismissive wave] Be off with you before I change my mind. [Fixes Austin with a cold gaze] And don't you dare go near Genitalia.

Alice: [To the others] Are we still talking about craters?


Charlie: [To Alice, wisely] It's never JUST about craters! [To Amelia, brightly] Right, then! Do stay in touch! [To the party, attempting to exit the tent] Come along, group.


Austin : [To Amelia] Certainly not! I have heard that it is quite the most horrid place in the realms. Do be careful in your investigations! [To the party] We should leave immediately, and not disturb our gracious hosts any further. [Goes back to the carriage, looking around as he does so.]


Alice: Yeah, she seems real nice, Aus.

[The party exit the tent to find FLETCH standing at the carriage with his pants down around his ankles and a number of horrified looking HARMA agents looking on.]

Fletch: Totes! Would you believe my own cat did that to me? [Spots the party] Ah! Gotta go! Thanks for the strawberries! [Pulls up his pants]


Clint: [Shuddering slightly as he steps away from Amelia.] She's always so warm and personable, isn't she?


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so warm and personable, isn't she?

Jordan: Anyone else notice there were 6 areas marked on that map? Looks like there are 6 craters and not 3.



Clint: And two by Genitalia, where the la... where we're clearly going next!


Alice: I wonder how many of these things there are? They're clearly to do with The Abyss or the Reveal? But what are they??


Charlie: They certainly seem harmless enough. [Hesitates] Well, other than when they slice people in half and such.


Alice: And what about the people who were in the spot where they appear? That doesn't seem like a good spot to be in, does it?


Charlie: Indeed, it does not. [Muses] I wonder if there is some significance to the pattern that seemed to be forming? Almost a half-circle, wasn't it? [Hurriedly tries to sketch the map from memory]


Clint: Unless there's more of these freak craters underwater...


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Last from Tom 19

Jordan: I wonder though, what is the connection between these craters, Alice's breasts getting bigger, Harvey's turn in personality, the Abyss cult, and our variations in memory regarding what happened there and right after leaving, such as whether or not we went through the field, and just what happened to the carriage driver? Any why does Aussie's girly want us to stay away from the 2 Genitalia craters? Or! [as if having an epiphany] was that her way of telling us we need to go there, without alerting her HARMA colleagues?



Alice: Or maybe that's what she wants us to think, and it's all actually an elaborate trap?


Charlie: [To Austin] What do you say, Mr. Sleaze? You know her better than we do, presumably. What do you think she was up to just there? Should we go to Genitalia?


Austin : We most certainly should go to Genitalia, Amelia seemed quite certain that the next crater will form there. The craters on the map looked more like a graceful curve to me, sort of like the profile of the trajectory of a slingshot bullet, landing in Genitalia.


[All the males cross their legs reflexively.]

Fletch: Totes squish!

[The party leap aboard and race off, face first towards Genitalia.]

Alice: So what's her game? I mean, assuming this isn't a trap, why is she working with them?


Austin : Well, that is a rather personal question, but since you asked, she is anti-path, as are HARMA. HARMA are also a bunch of easily manipulated idiots, quite a handy bunch in our line of work.


Charlie: To be fair, if she wanted us captured, she could have done it just now. As to her motives, I cannot imagine. Perhaps she disagrees with HARMA but lacks the moral courage to stand up to them. Or possibly she is just [puts on a girly annoying sing-songy voice] in loooooove with Mr. Sleaze!


Alice: It's not really personal if our lives are in danger! [To Charlie] Really? In [even more annoying sing-songy voice] loooooove with Austin? Now she really frightens me.

Fletch: [Looks back at the party] Dudes! Guy up ahead -- totes nak!


Austin : [Chuckles] Of course she is totally in love with me. Who isn't? [Sighs and checks his nails briefly]


Charlie: [Thrilled] Nak? Meaning [finger quotes] naked? [Cranes her neck to look down the road] Alistair?!


Austin : [Suddenly interested] Oh, is it another of your boyfriends? Are you going to copulate with him? [Looks out of the window]


Charlie: [Primly] Of course not. I am a happily married woman. I only wish to speak to Dr. Finley about these extraordinary craters!


Alice: Ew! Suddenly all your disinterest in Charlie's love life seems pretty hollow, Aus!

[Enter DR. HARRIS SMITH, completely naked, running towards the party.]

Harris: It's the end of the woooooooorld!


Charlie: [Disappointed] Oh! Who are YOU? And why do you think the world is ending? Something to do with craters, perhaps?


Austin : [To Alice] Well, I do love nature documentaries. [To Charlie] It could just be a wardrobe malfunction.


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Jordan: Maybe the wardrobe malfunction is why it's the end of the world? He might not even know about the craters yet.

;;; Do either Charlie or Jordan know him?



Charlie: A surprising number of scientists are devoted nudists, so I doubt he even notices!

;;; Charlie doesn't, as far as I know!


Harris: [Stops] What do you mean? [Looks down at his front] Oh no! The front of my clothes are missing too! [To the party] There are craters popping up all over! I was caught on the fringe of one of them!

;;; No one knows him!


up all over! I was caught on the fringe of one of them!

Dur: Are you insinuating that the crater stole your clothes?


Clint: [Reflexively crosses his legs again.] Talk about your close calls!


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Jordan: I take it the crater appeared behind you?



Harris: Yes! I was being chased by a small but somewhat scary mob, when it simply appeared!

Alice: And the crater stole your clothes?

Harris: No, I lost them in the chase.


Charlie: [Skeptically] That sounds rather unlikely. That's the sort of thing that only happens to Sexy Penis or the Reetles!


Austin : And why were people chasing you?


Harris: [Irritated at this harassment] Because I didn't have any clothes on!


Clint: [Trying not to eye Harris.] Wouldn't that make them run the other direction?!


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Jordan: That doesn't make sense. They were chasing you because you had no clothes one, but you lost your clothes while they were chasing you? Were you carrying your clothes and then dropped them?



Harris: That's what it did to the young children I was watching, so yes! [To Jordan, defiantly] Nothing makes sense any more! Nothing, I tell you!


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Jordan: You certainly got that right. Nothing you tell me makes sense any more. Not that it ever did before.



Harris: True. True. So, uh, [looks around to make sure there's no one within earshot] any small boys in the carriage?


Austin : [Suspiciously] I think that you know a lot more about the craters than you telling us. Why don't you tell us what you know, all of it!


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Jordan: [Disgusted at Harris' question] We'll have none of that filth here you perverted little man. Now answer my colleagues question before I turn you over to HARMA for witnessing a crater. Tell us everything you know about the craters, now!



Clint: But only about the craters, you sick freak!


Harris: Yeesh! Calm down! All I know is that they are caused by implosions. Everything within the Smithhole is sucked into the centre and disappears.


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Jordan: And what exactly is a Smithole? What is causing these implosions? [Takes out his notepad and starts noting all of this down]



Charlie: [To Jordan] He means Gillhole, I believe.


Harris: Don't be ridiculous. That's a stupid name! It's what the uninformed call craters, although I'm sure that [bitterly] Finley has some cool sounding name for them. Why is that when he walks around without any pants he's eccentric, but when I do it I'm called a menace to society?

Alice: Be....cause you do it in front of small children?

Harris: Tsk! You sound just like that damned judge!


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Jordan: [Chuckling] As opposed to the blessed judge?



Harris: Yeah! He said I should be let go, that what I was doing was perfectly natural. Good old Father Murphy.


Clint: Uh, yeah. So back to the craters. What's making them?


Alice: And where's the stuff that was there gone?

Harris: [Points at Clint] Good question, but I don't know. [Points at Alice] Excellent question. However, I haven't a clue.


Clint: So basically, all you know is that they're craters.


Harris: On the contrary, my well clothed friend. The crater is what's left. The real mystery is what happens to the material that was in the Smithhole.


Charlie: [Wide-eyed] Indeed! Have you any theories?


Harris: None.


Charlie: [Disappointed] Oh! [Brightly] But have you spoken to Dr. Finley about HIS theories? [Quickly] Not about going pants-free, but about the craters!


Harris: Finley! Pah! The man's a quack! A quack! Do you know what he said to me?

Alice: That you're a disgusting pervert who should be locked in jail?

Harris: Well, after that. He said quack.


Austin : [Frowning at Harris. To the party] I have the distinct feeling that this conversation has out lived it's usefulness. We should proceed to Genitalia.


Harris: Not so fast! What about the flock of swans you promised me?


Charlie: [Indignantly] Oh for flock's sake! We made no such promise. Now, do cover yourself and get yourself into intensive therapy at once.


[The carriage zooms off.]

Harris: How can I do that without any swans!?


Austin : What a vile man. he should be locked up for his own good! What ever made such an ugly person think that anyone else would want to see him naked?


Fletch: Totes uggo! Look, there's another crater!

;;; out for 2 hours


Charlie: [Alarmed] How many of these are there, I wonder? I do hope the common people do not begin to panic!


Austin : I think it may be a little late for that. [Concerned] Perhaps you could generate some hypotheses? What we know so far is that they are implosions, and that they follow a sort of pattern. Perhaps Alice can find a mathematical formula that describes the patterns? [Considers] Do you think that this has some connection with The Heart? That is a mathematical pattern too isn't it?


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Jordan: The Heart? What is that? But yes, there are 6 that HARMA know about, who knows how many others there are.



Alice: They're definitely on a curve, according to Amelia's map, but like Stinky said, maybe it goes under water too? I don't know if the Heart really was mathematical, although it was a pattern and, as we all know, all patterns however complex can be described by maths. [To Jordan] The Heart is the source of all life in the Realms, Jordie.


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Jordan: I see. So you want to use the source of life as a mathematical equation to solve to mystery of the craters? Interesting [nods slowly and makes a note of this] . So, what you are saying is, the craters have been created as some sort of device to keep the balance and for those who follow it to progress along The Path? I noticed someone earlier mentioned Aussie's sweetheart is Anti-Path. Perhaps the Fatebook I heard one of you mention earlier has some knowledge of these craters? Or is that not what the book is about?



Clint: Do we know if all these stupid craters appeared at the same time? If not, maybe we could figure out where and when the next one will show up. I bet we learn more watching one being made than seeing what happens once they're here!


Alice: That depends Stinky, on how close we are when it happens!


Clint: At least a crater's length away, I hope!


Charlie: Indeed! [To Clint] You do raise a surprisingly good point, though, about how these craters have appeared. WAS it all at once? We must continue to investigate!


[Before long the party are at the gates of Genitalia.]

Fletch: Right, I'll wait out here for you guys. [Sheepishly] Totes banned!


Austin : [To Fletch, curious] How long did that take you?


Fletch: About a minute. [Proudly] The judge said it was a new record!

[What appears to be a woman wearing a strange costume approaches the party, this is ANNA NASA. She is also heading towards Genitalia, but from the direction of Apraxia. She seems quite angry.]

Anna: [To the party] Do I look like a testicle?


Clint: [Helpfully.] Nah. I had a testicle that looked like that, I'd see a doctor! [Quickly.] Not you, Dur. [To Anna, still helpfully.] But you *do* look like an idiot!


Anna: Aw! Thanks! Will you do me a favour?


Clint: [Cautiously.] Depends on the favor?


Charlie: [To Anna, reassuringly] Though most probably he will! He is quite easily led and often lonely for feminine attention.


Anna: Great! Bring me to Apraxia so I can punch Alistair Finley in the back of the face hole. [Smiles at Clint] Gorgeous!


Charlie: [Horrified] He will do no such thing! Alistair Finley is a great man. [Giggles nervously] Is he really in Apraxia? [To the party, squealing] Perhaps he is seeking my professional opinion on the craters! How thrilling!


Alice: Yes. That sounds great.


Clint: [To Anna.] Sorry babe, we've got business here in Genitalia. But if you want to wait, any colleague of Charlie's probably deserves a punch in the face!


Charlie: [Indignantly] He was not merely a colleague! Ours was a meaningful and significant relationship. In fact, he dedicated a book to me!


Alice: Correct me if I'm wrong, but, strictly speaking, isn't Clint a colleague of Charlie's?

Anna: Pah! That's nothing! He has a special pet name for me AND he dedicated a book to me! It's called ZTP. It's really great!

Alice: What's it about?

Anna: Oh, I don't know. There are hardly any copies around now. He published it years ago!


Charlie: [Enraged] He dedicated that book to ME, and I happen to carry a copy with me, always! [Rummages around in her knapsack and triumphantly produces a battered, well-read copy of ZTP] Further, he had a very VERY special pet name for me, so do go find yourself a shortcake to settle down with and be off with you!


Anna: Nu-uh! That book was dedicated to me! [Punches Clint in the face]

[CLINT is startled, but not hurt.]


Charlie: [Shocked] You stop that at once! Mr. Scar has done nothing to you.


Anna: But he told me to punch him!


Austin : She does have a point, and witnesses. [To Anna] Why are you dressed in a strawberry outfit?


Anna: I thought it might make Finley want to pee on me.


Austin : Ah! Of course. Does he also have a special pet name for you?


Anna: Yes, and it's adorable!

[Time passes.]

Alice: And what is it?

Anna: Something weird, like Pucknudgie or something, but it sounds nice when he says it!


Charlie: [Reeling] Not PUKWUDGIE?!


Austin : [Super pleasantly] Why he sounds absolutely charming! [To the party] Well, we really must be getting along. Lots to do.


Anna: That's it! Puckwudgie! [To Austin] He's super nice, usually, but when I asked him to pee on me he got all weird, and told me to go to Genitalia, as that's where all the other disgusting wasters hang out.

Fletch: Totes right! At least, those who haven't been thrown out.

Anna: [Sighs sadly] He's just obsessed with the Reveals, that must be it. Oh, I should forgive him! I'll get another costume that looks less like a testicle, he's bound to find me more attractive then!


Austin : The Reveals? Please do tell us what you know about the Reveals?


Anna: Take me to Apraxia and I'll tell you everything I know about them!

Alice: You mean, back to the place that you just left?

Anna: Yeah!


Austin : Okay, but has anyone urinated on you recently?


Charlie: An excellent question! Another would be why on EARTH would we think you know anything whatsoever about The Reveals? You do not even know when a book was clearly NOT dedicated to you.


Anna: [To Austin] Not for a week or so. And that was me, so I guess it doesn't really count.

Alice: [To the party] What the hell is a Reveal? That preacher guy talked about The Reveal, but do we think that it's connected to the Gillholes?


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Jordan: You mean the Finholes, right?



Alice: What the hell is a Finhole?


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Jordan: The same as a Gillhole but has been named by Finley instead



Alice: Hm. [To Anna] Do you know what a Finhole is?

Anna: Sure do! It's where he likes me to put my stalk!


Austin : It is what academics do, they find something they think no one else has seen before and name it after themselves. For example, if Charlie had found it, we could call it a Chucklehole.


Clint: [Shrugs.] I say we just call them craters. Saves on priority disputes. But seems to me like this Reveal thing needs to jump to the top of our list! Maybe it's called the Reveal because it reveals what's where the bottom of the craters are now?


;;; Just wanted to tell you guys that our beloved GM has just been

;;; named a Fulbright Scholar! Queens View will be coming to you

;;; from exotic Boston, MA next fall, where Conor will be doing a

;;; sabbatical at MIT. : )


Alice: I know plenty of academics who've found an Alicehole, eh? Eh? [Thinks for a moment] I mean, hey!


Charlie: Plenty? Really? You're not just counting Deuce for each [finger quotes] use?


Alice: [Proudly] I've had more academics in me than an on-campus bar selling student priced beer to faculty only.

Anna: [Defiantly] Yeah, but did any of them pee on you?

Alice: Not deliberately.


Charlie: [Shudders] Yes, well, perhaps we should make our way to Apraxia, then? We now have several rather excellent reasons to go there, so fate seems to be showing the way!


Anna: Well said! [Starts to climb on board]

[ANNA is clearly reeking of the smell of stale pee.]


Charlie: [To Anna] I am sorry, but we have no space for inessential personnel. [Comfortingly] Do not worry, though. If you wait here long enough, some desperate man will likely offer you a warm bed in exchange for some disgusting sexual favor.

;;; That's my three.


[Everyone turns and looks at CLINT.]

Clint: [Shrugs] Sorry babe, we're in a hurry. [Slams the door of the carriage, before addressing the party] Don't say I never make any sacrifices!

[The carriage zooms off, leaving ANNA standing there.]

Anna: Right... uh, I'll just wait here then, okay?

[The carriage disappears from view.]

Anna: Yep, I'll hang on.

;;; End of scene, next one coming up right away


[Book IX, Act II, Scene IX. The Road to Apraxia. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, JORDAN and FLETCH are here, following the coast road which has just turned south. There is suddenly a deafeningly loud sucking sound from off into lake.]

Alice: What the hell was that?

Fletch: It sounded a bit like when the Gillhole appeared, but louder.


Austin : It must have happened in the lake? It's like some extra dimensional scientific sampling [Pauses] Trindle. I bet this is linked to Trindle!


Alice: It looks like the tide is going out really fast in the lake! [Thinks] Should the lake have a tide?


Austin : [Very worried, standing behind Alice] No, it should not. It is probably being caused by another implosion. Instead of a crater, it is sucking in all of the water from the lake!


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Jordan: [Amazed by what is happening, scribbling down notes] What is this Trindle you mention?



Alice: Dr. Jerome K. Trindle. He was once a beloved party member, then a murderous crazy person, then dead, then God. Huh, look at that, the water has stopped receding.

[Not only that, but it is heading back again very fast.]


Dur: [Watching the water] Wonder what that could mean...


Well congrats!

Thank you,=20 Kevin Day, CBA=20 Credit Manager - Western Region, and Ok, La, Ar=20 =20 Lehigh Hanson Inc 300 E. John Carpenter Frwy=20 Irving, Texas 75062=20 =20 Office: (972) 653-5541=20 Mobile: (214) 334-3627=20 Fax: (469) 586-1605=20 E-mail: kevin.day@lehighhanson.com=20

"For more information, employees can visit our SSC site on Unite." SSC Unite Site

-----Original Message----- Sent: Saturday, March 02, 2013 2:45 AM To: Tom Henderson Cc: dom; Marc-Andrew Hunnam Nicholas; Conor Ryan; Day, Kevin R. (Las Colinas) NA; Tom Henderson; qvblogger@gmail.com

;;; Just wanted to tell you guys that our beloved GM has just been ;;; named a Fulbright Scholar! Queens View will be coming to you ;;; from exotic B=

oston, MA next fall, where Conor will be doing a ;;; sabbatical at MIT. : )


Alice: I don't know, but it seems to be getting faster. Why is it getting faster?


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Jordan: Maybe the water is impatient to be back where it belongs?



Alice: Uh, is it just me or is it in such a rush to be back where it belongs that it is going to overshoot?


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Jordan: I hate to say it Alice, but I was thinking the same thing. Guys, I think now would be a good time to retreat and get the Abyss out of here.



Alice: [Nods] He's not taking the Abyss!

[The wave is gathering speed and size, and FLETCH zooms off.]

Fletch: We'll be totes soak!


Charlie: [To Fletch] Hurry, good man, and there's a shiny copper piece in it for you!


Clint: Where are you getting all these shiny copper pieces, Sarge?


[The now huge wave crashes onto the shore and smashes up against the carriage, sending it skidding out of control. FLETCH struggles to keep it upright, but it hits a ditch and flips over, eventually sliding to a halt. The party are all cut and bruised, but no one is badly hurt. Everyone is drenched and lying in a pile.]

Fletch: Totes flip!


Charlie: [Wrinkling her nose as she wrings out her suit] No shiny copper for you!


Alice: This is water, Clint. It's what normal people use when they clean themselves.


Charlie: [To Clint, reassuringly] Yes, you will not melt, so do not be alarmed! [Surveys the wreck] Can we right the carriage, do you think?


Austin : There are plenty of us, if we all lift together it should be easy!


Alice: Yes, as long as we all lift together!

Fletch: [Looks at Alice, who's already tight shirt looks even tighter now that it's wet] Totes tight!


Charlie: [Looking at Alice's chest, blushing] Oh, dear! Is it shrinking? Perhaps one of the men can loan you a shirt that will cover you?


Austin : [Looking from Fletch to Alice's ever tightening tops. Smugly] Totes. Perhaps Alice can give Fletch her shirt?


Fletch: [Gives Austin two thumbs up] Totes flounce!

Alice: [Enraged] Hey! Don't we have a carriage to flip?


Charlie: Indeed! [Tries to help with the carriage]


[Everyone joins in, and the carriage is soon flipped back over. Although damaged and soaking, it is still in working order.]

Alice: What on earth was that big wave about?


Charlie: [Ponders] An underwater Gillhole, perhaps? This is most worrying!


Clint: [Shuddering from his close brush with water.] I dunno, but I didn't like it!


Alice: Wow, Clint, you almost look clean. Almost. [To Charlie] It must have been! It sucked the water in and then a wave came back. Hm, we better not get too close to the water again.


t get too close to the water again.

Dur: Amen to that!


Clint: [Extremely hesitantly.] Should we try and find where the crater is so we can add it to the map? And be "we," I mean one of you guys!


Alice: Great idea, Clint. However, what map? And, I must admit, you do look like you could do with another wash!


Clint: [Regards Alice.] The map we're all carrying around in our heads of where the craters are, of course.


Charlie: Well, I did jot down some notes, but [holds out a soggy notepad unhappily] .


Clint: I know just how that notepad feels!


Alice: So, are we going to head to Apraxia?


Charlie: That horrid woman seemed to think that Dr. Finley is there, at least. Perhaps he could help us with our investigation?


Alice: He's not going to pee on us, is he? Although, it would probably make Stinky stink less!

;;; Gone for an hour!


Clint: Then what are we waiting for? The sooner we can deal with the craters, the sooner we can get back to dealing with Wil!


Austin : [Thoughtful] I think that the tidal wave indicates that the water was returned? Perhaps whatever is taking the ground doesn't like water much!


Alice: Maybe it was just the water resettling? You know, like after an underwater earthquake?


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Jordan: I'm not so sure. If the crater was under the water then the water would still be pouring in to the hole now, like a plughole in a sink after the plug was pulled out. Unless the "thief" is a relation to Clint, which would explain the water being returned.

;;; Sorry about the absence today



Austin : [Looks at the filthy Clint] Indeed. Is the water level lower than usual?


[Although still sloshing back and forth, the water does appear to be slightly lower than before.]

Alice: Would a Gillhole do that? Basically cause a big wave?


Austin : Yes, I believe that you are correct. Once the hole had sucked up all the water, the rest of the loch would rush in to fill the space and then bounce back in a big wave thing.


Alice: Yikes, so they didn't all appear at the same time, I guess?

[A man, MICK NURDOCH, appears heading towards the party. He is sitting on a hospital bed that is speeding downhill towards them.]

Fletch: Look at this guy!


Charlie: What an outrageous abuse of hospital equipment!


[The bed crashes into the carriage.]

Mick: Hey there! [Shakes a can at the party] Want to contribute? It's for charity! We're pushing a bed from Apraxia to Genitalia!


Austin : [Unimpressed] What are you raising money for?


Mick: Charity! Yay! [Shakes the box in Austin's face]


Austin : [Dryly] Which charity?


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Jordan: Indeed, which charity? [Wrings out his soaked notepad]



Charlie: [Eyes Jordan's notepad, annoyed] Writing poetry, are you?


Mick: Charity! Whoo! Charity McBusty-Chesterton III!


Clint: At least your cause sounds worthy.


Mick: It sure is! She's the best stripper in all of Apraxia! At least [face grows dark] until she met Finley.


Charlie: [Delighted] Oh, how thrilling! You can confirm Dr. Finley is in Apraxia? [Eagerly] Did he say anything about me?!


Clint: Didn't you hear, Sarge? He was too busy peeing on strippers!


Mick: I don't know, it depends on who you are! [To Clint] Aw, man, you think he peed on her? I knew that the whole pretending to be his assistant thing was ruse!


Austin : [Edges away from Charlie] Did he pee on you too?


Charlie: [To Austin, primly] That is decidedly none of your business. [To Mick] I am Dr. Charlotte Parker-Kensington. [Expectantly] Well?!


Alice: Ew! Is that why you're all wet, Charlie?

Mick: Pretty good, thanks, but I'll be better once Charity gets her kit off. And nope, I don't think he mentioned you. Unless you were were a testicle outfit earlier?


Clint: Naw, that was someone else. [Shudders.] I hope.


Charlie: [To Mick, patiently] No, I was the one in the respectable gray suit. [Blushes] Well, part of the evening, anyway!


Austin : [To Charlie] Ewww! Nasty! So he did pee on you!


Mick: Sorry, doesn't ring a bell. Unlike Charity did, with those tiny ones clipped onto her! [Shakes his collection box in Clint's face, irritating close] Come on! For Charity! We need to get her away from Finley!


Clint: Haw! We'll do even better than money - we'll go take Finley away. Sarge, save the stripper and save the world!


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no, not poetry Chuckles, I was making notes on our quest so far, the important details, like a copy of the map in the tent.



Mick: [Shakes even more] But he's made her into a geek! We need money to buy alcohol and drugs!


Charlie: [To Jordan, a tad sullenly] But that is the sort of thing I write in MY notepad!


Alice: Oh for Phili's sake! You can both write stuff down in your soaking wet notebooks that no one will ever read!

Mick: [Shake-a-shake-a-shake-a] Come ooooon!


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Jordan: Ah yes, but a backup copy never did any harm now, did it? Especially given you said I could be co author of your book [said with a mischievous grin] Here! [puts a shiny copper in to the tub Mick is waving about] for the cause!



Mick: Whoohoo! Thanks guy! [Starts pushing the bed away]


Charlie: [To Jordan, outraged] How dare you! I dispense the token charity in this group! And I never agreed to co-authorship!


Clint: [Trying to play the peacemaker.] That's okay, Sarge, the poet agrees that he'll let YOU be the one that Finley pees on, right?


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Jordan: Oh absolutely. I wouldn't dare dream of getting in between the love birds. However, not only did you agree to it Chuckles, it was actually your idea.

;;; Her actual words were along the lines of "Are you fishing for co

authorship on my book by any chance?"



Charlie: [Haughtily] Do be serious. My relationship with Dr. Finley is now strictly platonic. And I never would have made such an absurd suggestion. A co-authorship credit with a POET?! The very idea! [Claps her hands briskly] Now, enough of this nonsense! We must be on our way to Apraxia.

;;; Hee hee! Poor Charlie!


Fletch: Cool! Totes Plat!

[And off they go, towards the hollowed halls of Harbridge University in Apraxia.]

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up


[Book IX, Act II, Scene X. The Cryptozoology Department. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, JORDAN and FLETCH are here, parked outside the building.]

Alice: I want everyone on their best behaviour. This is where Charlie and Jordan work, so no one is to embarras them, okay? [Opens the door of the carriage causing a flood of water to come, after which she trips over a fish and falls onto the ground.]

;;; Kevin is out for the rest of the week

Dur: Hey! There's sushi! [Grabs the still flapping fish and bites it] Mm! Tastes like boot!


Austin : [Deadpan] Hmm, The Cryptozoology Department. I bet they have some great parties here. [Steps over Dur and Alice]


Alice: [Leaps to her feet] Really? I'd have thought they'd be pretty lame!


Austin : Sarcasm, sweetie, sarcasm.


Charlie: [Excited] On the contrary! Our lab is often awash with Hookers and Blow!


Fletch: This sounds like my kind of ... what is this place?


Austin : [To Charlie] I just hope it's not awash with urine.


;;; Heather's afk

Charlie: Of course not, Mr. Sleaze. We're not lawyers, you know! Now, come along, we might be lucky enough to catch a game of Hookers and Blow. It's nearly time for the 3.30 Tea Break!


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Jordan: [Steps over Alice and Dur] Hmm, I suppose we'll have to inform the Faculty head of Nikki's death while we are here.



Alice: Why?

;;; Alice got up in post 02.10.003!


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Jordan: Because she used to work here at the university too Alice.

;;; Sorry, must have missed that.



Charlie: [In a low voice] I think perhaps he is referring to her recent and probable career suicide, when she published a no-doubt profitable article about some very dubious scientific results in Hi! magazine! [Distastefully] Honestly, I hardly think a sample of ONE constitutes a reasonable sample size when trying to prove that [finger quotes] Older Women Are Better Lovers!

;;; I don't think Nikki died, Drew, but I'm not sure?


Alice: Deucie definitely disagreed with that. In fact, he felt so strongly about it, he liked when I used to wear a school girl outfit!

Dur: But Nikki still works here, right? Maybe we should talk to her before being urinated on?

;;; Alive and kicking!


Charlie: [Uncomfortably] Yes, and I suppose I really should apologize for her being dragged into [vaguely] all of that insurance business before.


Dur: [Chomping on the fish] Surely it's more important to find out about the Gillholes?


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Jordan: Yes, well, ones social suicide might as well mean death for some.

;;; I could have sworn Nikki died in the fight against Pollyanna



Dur: Not me! I find it makes people ignore me even more. [Smiles, showing bits of fish between his teeth] More left overs for me!

[The party enter the Cryptozoology Department, where they meet a lab assistant, CHARITY MCBUSTY-CHESTERTON III. She takes off her glases and licks her lips salaciously.]

Charity: Welcome to the Cryptothingummy Department!


Clint: [Indicates Charlie with a nod of his head.] Welcome to your future! Now, where's this Finley guy?


Charity: [To Charlie] You're me from the future? Wow! What is it, like a hundred years from now?


Charlie: [Shoots Clint a dirty look. To Charity, all business] There is no time to explain such things to you. Where is Dr. Finley?


Charity: Wow, I get really mean when I'm old! Hey, if you really are me, you should know where he is!


Clint: Well, show us to him anyway, doll.


Charlie: [Wearily] Oh, we shall find him ourselves! [Calls out] Dr. Finley, it is Dr. Parker-Kensington! Hello?


[A voice calls from another room.]

Voice: Pukwudgie! Where are you?


Charlie: [Flushed and embarrassed] In here, Alistair!


Clint: [Helpfully.] And she's happily married with a demon-spawn child, so don't go peeing on her!


Charity: Hey! Pukwudgie is his pet name for ME!


Charlie: [To Charity, indignant] Do be serious! You probably cannot even describe or properly classify a Pukwudgie!


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Jordan: I wouldn't jump to conclusions Chuckles, Charity is you 100 years ago after all, so it makes sense you have the same nickname, because you're the same person.



Alice: Hey! How come this is the first the rest of us have heard about her being from the future?

Charity: Maybe she's already told you, but it was a future you?


Charlie: [To Jordan] Do stop confusing Alice! We have enough trouble simply keeping her dressed, shoes on the proper feet and such!


Clint: [Clearly amused.] Besides, Chuck here doesn't seem a day over 50!


Alice: Certainly not a day over 60!

[Enter DR. ALISTAIR FINLEY, an unusually hairy man in a moth eaten cardigan and underpants.]

Finley: Eh? What the devil is going on here? These people don't seem to have a French curve!

Charity: I told you, I don't know where the cake shop is!


Charlie: [Beaming] Hello, Alistair! [Glances casually at Charity] I heard you calling for me. Did you wish to ask my opinion on the sudden emergence of all of those Gillholes?!


Finley: Eh? Who the devil are you and what's a Gillhole?


Charlie: [Deflated] Pukwudgie!


Finley: Ah, I see. [Looks at the party] And who are you people? Why are you so wet?


Austin : We were caught in a tidal wave caused by an implosion in the lake. It is not because we have been or like being urinated upon, and anyone who attempts any such actions will be met with swift physical retaliation.


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Jordan: In other words, we'll throw Sir Stinks-the-most at you [points to Dur]



Finley: [Peers at Austin] Eh? What in damnation is he blathering about? Is he another one of those weirdoes who wants me to urinate on him? Well, young man, I'm afraid I'm going to have to disappoint you!


Austin : [Disgusted] No! I do not want you to urinate on me or anyone else! [Calms] If weirdoes ask you to do that you should say no!


Finley: I am saying no!


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Jordan: Ah, but what if a non-weirdo asked to be urinated on? Or, better yet, a non-weirdo asked for a weirdo to be urinated on! Mr Sleaze, I believe you may be able to offer your legal services here.



Finley: Unless it's a medical emergency involve a jelly fish or somesuch, or some sort of scientific experiment, then I absolutely refuse to urinate on [gestures to Austin] this man or anyone else for that matter! Now, what do you people want?


Austin : Good! [Sighs] We are here to discuss the craters that a appearing around the realms.


Charlie: [Realization dawning] OH! I know what this is about! [To Finley] Alistair, you needn't be worried that acknowledging our previous relationship will endanger you in any way. My husband is an angel now, and he no longer wishes to chop you into small bits, feed those bits to a pig, chop that pig to bits, make a tasty barbecue from it, feed it to a rabid dog, then brutally stomp that dog to death, then [looks around at the party, embarrassed] er, not that he ever did anything like that!

;;; This game is so disturbing.


Finley: [Looks from Austin to Charlie and back again, before breaking into a laugh and smile] Wonderful! Wonderful! I hate when pigs get killed! [To Austin] You mean [dramatically] The Reveals?


Charlie: [Excited] Yes! But what is being [dramatically] Revealed, do you know?


Finley: The Abyss!

;;; Gone for the weekend...


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Jordan: So what we need to know is, who is doing this, and why?



Finley: Good questions, both! What have you discovered thus far?


Austin : That the reveals did not happen all at once, but are continuing, in a pattern, following a tightening curve or possibly a spiral. Also that they are implosions, that instantaneously or very rapidly make the earth or water disappear. What have you discovered thus far?

;;;; [Takes some chalk and draws a rough map and the pattern on a

black board if there is one]


Finley: Indeed, believing them to be implosions makes sense! The material is being taken somewhere, which is why there is no debris. I am not yet sure what happens to living things caught within one but, given the violent nature of them, I suspect it isn't good.

[AUSTIN marks the ones found by the party on the board, using the soppy notepads of JORDAN and CHARLIE.]

Finley: Indeed! However, you are missing some. [Fills in a few more, in Acedia and two outside of Apraxia, before turning to the party, beaming] Now, what's the pattern?

;;; And no, doing a search on Google for French Curve to get the answer

;;; isn't fair!!!


Austin : Things are not looking good for Apraxia. [To Finley] It is a bit like water going down a plug hole. Perhaps that is where the center of the Abyss will start? [Shrugs] Perhaps we can plug the hole?

;;;; yeah yeah - blame the French!


Charlie: But what IS the Abyss?


Finley: Whatever it is, it has already started! [Looks around] Where is that girl gone? Oh, never mind. I'll do it the old fashioned way. Please forgive the crudeness of my work.

[FINLEY starts drawing on the map, muttering to himself as he does so, before eventually drawing a spiral freehand on it. When he's done, he steps back.]

Finley: [Pointing to the start of the spiral, which is just outside Apraxia] There! Whatever is causing the Reveals to appear is centered there. What do we know about that location?

Alice: Er, isn't that your house, Charlie?

;;; Yes it is!


Charlie: [Gasps] What?! [To Finley] But there's nothing there but Bodenringham Manor and what's left of my family! [To the party, urgently] Hurry, we must go there at once!


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Jordan: Who knows, we may find your daughter while we are there.



Austin : [Pale] Let's hope that they are okay!


Finley: Unless there's some sort of demon activity there they should be fine. [Thinks for a moment] Or if they're caught in a Reveal. [Thinks some more] Or if those stories about Vicious Pigeons are true and they find themselves besieged by a flock of flying rats, pooping disease all over them and the countryside!


Charlie: [Angrily] The mere presence of demons changes nothing! Pestilence and Wilhelmina have lived at the Manor for some time with no incident, so your half-baked theories are not only offensive and demonist, they are also WRONG.


Finley: Good to hear! I had heard all sorts of awful tales of spirits imprisoned in houses, murders, fires, mass attacks, children's parties and torture. Still, something terrible happened there. Something that is related to the Reveals.


Charlie: [Winces] Well, it is in no way related to the many tragedies that have befallen my family, nor to the various [vaguely] misunderstandings that have caused some of them, I can assure you. Now, I must go there at once!


Alice: Where's Fletch? Still outside?


Dur: [Shrugs] I dunno, weren't you watching him?

;;; I'm back baby!


Alice: I was, and then I came in here!

;;; Out for an hour!


Charlie: We shall see when we return to the carriage. Come along, group! [To Finley] Dr. Finley, do join us, won't you?


Finley: Oh no, I appreciate the offer, but I would like to find out more about the Reveals before approaching the epicentre. Besides, I shall be performing oral sex on Charity for quite some time this evening, after which I will be eating an orange. Not to worry, though! Once I have more information, I will follow!


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Jordan: But what about your love affair with Dr Parker-Kensington?



Finley: What of it? It was a thing of beauty that changed my life forever, but we have both since moved on.


Austin : I suspect the budget for that project ran out some time ago.


Finley: No doubt blown away in a blaze of glory!


Austin : Well, we must not delay any longer, I do hope Fletch and the Fletch mobile are still totes here.


Charlie: Just the carriage would suffice! [Dramatically] To the carriage!


[The party race outside to find that the carriage is still there, although there's no sign of FLETCH.]

;;; Tom's out today

Clint: He's toes gone!

Alice: Don't you mean totes gone?

Clint: No, his toes are gone, as is all of him!


Charlie: [Calls out] Mr. Hatcher! Do come to meet us at once, as we have no time to wait for your nonsense and absurd word play any longer!


Austin : [Checks in the carriage] He's probably practicing with Charity.


[AUSTIN opens the door of the carriage to see FLETCH behind CHARITY, grinding into her.]

Charity: Oh! Oh! Oh!

Fletch: Totes! Totes! Tooooooooootes! Holy Phili on a bike! [Spots the party] Hey guys! I'm just done!


Charlie: [To Charity, horrified but also slightly smug] How could you do such a thing to Dr. Finley? You are not fit to clean his beakers!


Charity: I've already cleaned his beaker. Twice! Now I'm with uh.. [to Fletch] What's your name?

Fletch: Er, John... Smith.


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Jordan: Maybe we should invite Dr Finley again, given the circumstances.



Clint: Given the circumstances, maybe we should invite her instead!

;;; Here for the next 30 minutes or so.


Dur: [To Clint] Is it still considered an invitation if you have to pay forher involvement?


Clint: Well, think of it like a postdoc - there's lots of valuable research experience, and not much salary. But everyone's doing it!


Fletch: Why don't you wait for me in the cafe across the road, babes?

Charity: Oh, er, okay, John.

[CHARITY crosses the road.]

Fletch: Let's get out of here!


Charlie: Agreed, though you should be aware that you will not be able to outrun the social diseases you have just acquired!


Austin : As long as he can still drive, it's not our problems, Chuckles old girl.


Alice: [Leaping back off her seat] Ew! I wouldn't be so sure!!


Charlie: [Wrinkles her nose, disgusted] Mr. Hatcher, it is only courteous to clean up one's bodily fluids once [shudders] expended!


Austin : [Looking at the spillage] That might not be his, it looks more like hers. [Checks the seat on the opposite side and sits there if it is clean] I'm sure Mr Scar, and Dur wont mind.


Fletch: [Dips his finger into the spillage and tastes it] Yeah, it's mine!


Clint: [Looks around the carriage.] Uh, I guess I'll just take the roof!


Alice: Oh, Fletch. If Clint thinks you're too disgusting, you really have a problem.

Fletch: [Two thumbs up and a big smile] Totes Filth!

;;; End of scene!




;;; Sorry about that last post, I hit some mysterious key combination

;;; that sent the mail!!

[Book IX, Act II, Scene XI. The Carriage. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR, JORDAN and FLETCH are here, driving towards the manor.]

Alice: If it all starts at the manor, what does this mean about The Abyss?


Austin : That something in the manor created it or opened it? [To Charlie] Were you aware of any portals to other dimensions, or powerful magical artifacts, in the manor?


Charlie: No, it's just an ordinary home! [Fretfully] Though, of course, Pestilence has worked tirelessly to improve security, so I suppose there is a VERY slim chance he inadvertently tapped into something sinister, though with all good intentions. . . .


Alice: And there is just that teeny tiny minor issue of what happened to Will. I mean, she did kill a whole bunch of people when Pestilence killed you, remember!


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Jordan: What about attacks on the manor?



Alice: I don't think it was anything serious, Jordie. Just some sort of kid's birthday party. You know, some dead. Sexy Penis concert. The usual!


Charlie: [Uneasily] Surely this has nothing to do with Will. She was just terribly disturbed at losing us and [lamely] reacted badly in the heat of the moment.


Alice: Yes, but [gently] how badly do you think she might react?


Charlie: [Uncomfortably] I don't know. I am not quite sure what she is capable of now. [Quickly] But we must at least entertain the possibility that the disturbance at the Manor has not only created the craters but also caused Will to behave [vaguely] uncharacteristically!


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Jordan: Maybe she's just still fangirling over Sexy Penis having been to her birthday party?



Austin : [Sighs, checks his nails] Maybe she just misses her uncle Austin, and she is wracked with anxiety.


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Dur: I always thought Sexy Penis fans were more interested in stuffing holes than creating new ones?



Last from Dom and Kevin

Alice: [Gives Dur a look of disgust] Yeah, Aus. I'm sure that's it.

[The party approach the manor, which, amazingly, is not on fire and appears to be intact.]


Charlie: [Relieved] Everything certainly looks normal, at least! [Anxiously] We must find Mother and Grandmother.


Clint: And your daughter, while we're at it!


[The carriage approaches the front of the manor, only for a man to step out in front holding a large crossbow. It is PAUL "PINKY" PINKMAN, a long time minion of PESTILENCE'S.]

Pinky: Stop right there or I'll shoot.

Fletch: Will I run him down?


Clint: Do what the freak says. Who knows what else Charlie's loving husband has done about security around here after he... uh... became the man of the family.


Alice: I think we know this guy. [Calls out] Hey! Pinky! Do you remember us?

Pinky: [Long, sad sigh] Are you those awful people who hung out with Charlie?

Alice: Yay! He remembers us!


Dur: [Calling back] I will assure you, good sir, that it is CHARLIE that hangs out with US awful people!


Pinky: Even now that she's dead?


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Jordan: [Calling back] Especially now that she's dead.



Pinky: [Looking disgusted] What do you people want?


Clint: To talk to Charlie's mother and grandmother, for now. It's what Charlie would want!


Charlie: [Flustered] Pinky, it's me! I'm alive! Where are Mother and Grandmother?!


Clint: See?


Pinky: Charlie! You're alive! Come on, the others are inside. [Leaps into the carriage and addressed Fletch] Sorry man, didn't mean to threaten you. I thought you were some disgusting waster here to try and rob the women.

Fletch: No worries, people make that assumption about me all the time. It could be because of my shirtlessness, [thinks] although, it could be because of my long prison record from aggravated robbery of women.


Charlie: [Heads into the Manor] Thank you, Pinky. Do see to our driver, won't you? [Gestures to Fletch, adding in a low voice] And for the love of GOD, keep him away from Cordelia if she's about!


Pinky: [Glares at Fletch] I'll sort him out. Cordy went looking for Will after the fire.


Charlie: [Alarmed] Fire? What happened?!


Pinky: It was minor, in Will's room. No one was hurt, although most of her stuff was destroyed.


Charlie: [Warily] How did it start?


[The carriage pulls up outside the manor.]

Pinky: You'd better ask your mother about that.


[The party climb out of the carriage and see that HELENA and GERTRUDE are waiting.]

Gertrude: Thank Phili you're okay!

Helena: [Coolly] Welcome back.


Charlie: [Hugs her grandmother warmly. To Helena, hesitantly] Mother, are you all right?


Helena: I'm quite well. Please, come in.

Gertrude: [To the party] Come on, everyone! We've just heard about how Charlie is alive -- I just know you people were involved!


Austin : [Sighs] It was nothing really, another life saved, and another apocalypse averted. [Smiles] All in a days work. [Gestures to the party] They did help a little too.


Alice: Yes, we mainly just stood around talking about how great Austin was.

Gertrude: I'm sure he was great! Come on in!

[Everyone heads to the house.]

Alice: What about Fletch? Should we bring him?


Charlie: [Laughs] The very idea, inviting a servant in to tea! Pinky will keep him occupied, not to worry. [Heads for the Manor]


Austin : Perhaps he would choose not come.


Alice: I'll ask.

[ALICE opens the carriage door to find FLETCH having sex with PINKY.]

Fletch: Totes! Totes! Tooootes!

Alice: [Closes the door] Er, I think Pinky's keeping him occupied.

;;; Out for about 1.5 hours


Charlie: [Appalled] I am starting to think Mr. Hatcher might have a crippling sexual addiction of some kind!


Helena: [Disapprovingly] I see. Well, come on in and we can tell you what has happened.

[The party enter the house with HELENA and GERTRUDE. There is a very strong smell of smoke.]


Charlie: [Apprehensively] Mother, what happened here? [Reluctantly] Did Will set fire to her room?


Clint: [Clearly lying.] If she did, I'm sure it was an accident, Chuck.


Austin : Perhaps it was all part of a greater plan, she would not be the first teenage girl to burn her room down.


Helena: Yes, it was deliberate, but it was to destroy her own possessions, not the house.


Clint: What kind of crazy kid destroys her own stuff! [Pats Charlie awkwardly on the shoulder.] At least we know that she's not a cutter. Except of other people.


Austin : [Shocked] Why would she want to destroy her own possessions?


Gertrude: It was mainly her pictures. Will always had a prodigious output of artwork, right from when she was a child, and was very proud of them, but hadn't done any since her Mat Vitzbah. When she arrived back, believing her parents dead, she locked herself in her room and produced a fairly stunning piece of art. She then told us that both her parents were alive, and she left, with a hooded stranger, and the room was on fire.


Charlie: [Stunned] What?! Who was this person? How could you let her leave with a stranger?!


Helena: [Snaps] We didn't let her leave, she just left! How on earth would you propose we stop her?


Charlie: [Flailing] But something must have happened to make her behave this way! What's happened here? Something that's happened at the Manor has created large craters all over the Realms, and whatever it was has also turned Will into--I don't know. . . .


Alice: Maybe seeing her Dad kill her Mum, and then seeing him be torn to pieces by a horde of demons?


Charlie: But what caused the craters?! [To Helena and Gertrude] Other than Will's outburst, has anything unusual happened here? Can you tell us anything more--anything at all--about this caped person who left with Will?


Gertrude: I'm afraid not. Poor Will became hysterical and raced off. It was all we could do to put out the fire. We think the Reveals started appearing shortly before she left.


Clint: When did the caped guy show up?


Gertrude: This morning -- it's evening now, so they could be anywhere!


Charlie: [Unhappily] My poor, confused little girl! [To Gertrude] Where is the artwork you mentioned? Was there anything else in her room that might help us find her? Perhaps a journal?


Gertrude: Nothing that made it out, unfortunately, but we have saved the artwork here. It's a painting of a window and a scene outside it. We have some other ones too, but all of her drawings were quite similar.

[GERTRUDE shows the party some pictures. Two are ones that they had seen in the past, while one is an oil painting.]


Charlie: [Gasps at the oil painting] Incredible! [Squints at the painting] Who is that woman? [To Gertrude and Helena] Have you seen her before? A friend, perhaps?


Helena: Never. We have no idea who she is. We had rather hoped that it was someone that you or the party had encountered in your travels. Wilhelmina seems to have some moderate psychic abilities, perhaps she saw someone that you had encountered?


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Jordan: [Having been silent the whole time] More to the point [squinting] who is the man in the moon?



Alice: There's no man in the moon! It's just what people tell young girls so they don't get up to mischief at night. It's -- oh! [Looks closely] Yes there is! Anyone got a magnifying glass?


Charlie: [Looks closely at the moon] It could be Pestilence, don't you think? And it is quite appropriate that he is in the heavens, given that-- [excitedly, to Helena and Gertrude] oh, but you do not know! My darling Pestilence is alive, and now in service as an ANGEL. Isn't that marvelous?! [Sadly] Perhaps Will saw that somehow and felt lonely, being the only demon in the family now. The poor dear!


Gertrude: How wonderful!

Helena: How wonderful.

Alice: Er, ye-es. It does look like it could be Pestilence. What does it mean, though?


Charlie: She has drawn him before, of course, so perhaps it means nothing. I think the mystery woman is more revealing. Perhaps she knows Will and is helping her hide? Maybe we could ask in nearby towns to see if anyone has seen this woman?


Alice: What about the cup? It looks a little out of place, doesn't it? Could that have any special meaning?


Austin : [Comes back after looking zoned out at the oil painting.] That is a beautiful painting. The cup has appeared several times before in her art work has it not?


Alice: It has. Look! [Points at the other two] Maybe there's some sort of pattern across all three?


Austin : The cup of blood, the window, a lightening bolt, the moon?


Charlie: [Skeptically] Surely these are all just easy things for a young artist to draw? Don't most children draw such images? [Studies the paintings] The cup IS rather peculiar, though, isn't it? It doesn't really seem to fit logically in two of the paintings, so seems oddly deliberate.


Clint: Maybe it's a trophy for the first parent who notices that she likes to draw moons and lightning bolts?


Alice: He's right, Charlie, they are in all of them. And the tree! At least, that's what I think it is. I mean, no offence, but some of her early work isn't great!


Clint: [Squinting.] Oh, is *that* what that is? Okay, poet, you're supposed to be an expert on symbolism and crap like that, being a poet... What's a lightning bolt, a cup, the moon, and a tree mean?


Charlie: [To Gertrude and Helena] Do either of you know anything about these items? Can you remember Will having a fixation on them?


Gertrude: Not a fixation, but most of her drawings did contain them.


Austin : Well, the window suggests watching, or separation. Note that the people in the pictures are either in front or behind the window. [Ponders] The tree, could be the tree of life? Perhaps symbolising immortality?


Clint: Say, do demons interpret symbols the same way that normal people do?


Charlie: [Wryly] In my experience, they tend to be rather literal!


Alice: So the tree might just be a tree?


Clint: [Nods.] Sometimes a tree is just a tree.


Charlie: Possibly! Perhaps we should have a look around the grounds to see if there are any unusual trees? Perhaps Will had a little retreat near a tree?


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Jordan: [Pondering] It would seem the man, the woman and the cup are all inside, and there is not one but several trees. Perhaps the blonde is actually Will. You said Pestilence became an angel, perhaps this blonde is her inner angel wanting out to join her father. The moon and trees, where was this torturing done? [points to the picture done with Tim Victor] If you notice the cup is there gathering the victims blood also. The lightning bolt only appears upon the death of this woman here [points to Charlies first death] So perhaps the man isn't Pestilence at all, but a foretelling of the one who would tell her you were both still alive, and she is in fact on her way to losing her demonic side and becoming an angel, but trails involving her upbringing are involved?

;;; Okay everyone, that is me out until May. I go on holiday to the USA

next Tuesday for 6 weeks and don't get back to the UK until 1st May. I had

intended to still be posting on Monday, but I've got a hospital appointment

that is going to tie up the majority of my day on Monday. Oh, and please

DON'T take me off the mailing list, I'd like to keep up to date when I can

on what's going on so I'm not lost when I return haha. Sorry for the lack

of posting this last week or so also, I've been changing my sleeping hours

to match the time zone I'm going to be in to reduce jet-lag (I hope).

Gonna miss you all! Drew



Alice: No, the lightning bolt is in the first one, look, down in the bottom right corner? Under the blood?


Austin : [Considering the paintings] It looks like the earlier two works show that the tree, moon and Charlie are on one side of the window and the lightening and cup are on the other side, with Wil and Pestilence in one case. Those suggest that there is a separation of worlds, the demon world from the realms. [Looks pale] The latest work shows everything on the other side of the window, implying that the worlds have merged, just as the human world and the demon world is merged in Wil.


Jordan: Maybe. [Looks closely at the new painting] Is that someone behind the window? To the right of the lightning and just above the middle bar?


Austin : [Looks closely at the painting] No, I don't see anything there.


Charlie: [Takes a close look at the painting and frowns] I'm not sure? What do you see, Jordan?


Jordan: A woman, I think. [Traces it with his finger]

Alice: Yes, I think I see it!


Charlie: [Excited] Oh, yes! I see her now. How many other faces are in this painting? How extraordinary!

;;; Out for two or more hours, FYI!


Alice: There's Pesty, the blonde in the middle and that other one -- you know, I think it looks a bit look Charlie!

;;; The shape of the head is certainly similar to her picture on the main page!


Charlie: [Gasps] You're right, that IS the Parker-Kensington forehead! Well spotted!


Alice: So what does this mean? She painted this as soon as Charlie and Pesty died?

Gertrude: I think it was more probably once she realized they were alive.


Dur: Perhaps she wants to put the family back together?


Clint: Hopefully she doesn't do something too angsty and teenagery about it! Like lighting her room on fire and leaving with a strange man...


Alice: Hopefully! [Thinks] Oh. It's too late! [Looks more closely at the picture] Any idea who the girl might be? Is she supposed to be blonde?


Clint: Maybe we should ask around, find out?


Charlie: Agreed! Perhaps she is a local girl?


Clint: If she's not just made up, she'd have to be, wouldn't she? Having Pestilence for a father has to be hell on a kid's social life!


Helena: I can categorically say that she is not someone that Wilhelmina knows locally. If she knows her, it is someone she met when she was away with her father.


Charlie: [Sighs] Well, we can show the painting to Pestilence, but I am not sure when we will see him again. Perhaps we can ask people in the surrounding areas if they have seen Will and the hooded figure?


Alice: And maybe try and find out what it has to do with The Reveal? I mean, it has to have something to do with it, right?


Charlie: [Uncomfortably] I do not see why we must assume that. It could be coincidental! You could just as easily make the argument that Pestilence caused the Reveals when he shut that interdimensional gate. [Snaps her fingers] In fact, that makes much more sense, does it not?!


Alice: I think it makes less sense! Why would that cause them to start? Maybe it should have made them stop!

;;; We've got a new player starting today, folks, that's Jack. Please make sure

;;; he's included on the list from now on.


Austin : Were these pictures painted before the events they depict?

;;; Hi Jack :)


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Jordan: [To Charlie] Given that, perhaps it would be prudent then to consider that both Pestilence and Will are somehow connected to The Reveal. It could be that whatever is causing them may have been talking to Will and guided her brush, perhaps giving her visions, and the gate Pestilence closed needed to be closed as part of a bigger plan. That maybe it was one in a sequence of events that were needed to be completed in order for The Reveal to be possible! [Looks smugly satisfied with himself] But then Fletch's enormous sex drive could also be behind the entire thing [not so smug] .

;;; Hi Jack! Welcome to the mad house!



Charlie: [Stubbornly] Well, they WERE open for a while, though. [Crosses her arms] We must consider all possibilities.

;;; Welcome, Jack!



Dur: That's what we thought about Clementine too at one point!

;;; Hi-Ho Jack!


Alice: True! And what about the Baceks? Maybe that means something?

Getrude: [Pales] The Baceks? Is that what you said?

Alice: Uh, yeah...

Gertrude: Are you sure?


Charlie: Why, what does that mean?!


Charlie: [To Jordan] Indeed, we should keep an open mind about the possible causes for these extraordinary events. [To Gertrude, shaking her head] No, not that I recall. We have heard about The Reveal and something called The Abyss, but these are not people, obviously.


Alice: [Points to the first] That was during, for definite, as we saw her.

Gertrude: There's at least a possibility that the others were done before then, so perhaps the face in the picture is someone no one has seen yet? Has there been any predictions made about someone that you will encounter?


Gertrude: Uh, nothing. Helena, why don't you see how our other guests are doing?

Helena: The ones fornicating in the carriage?

Gertrude: Yes.=20


Austin : [To Helena] Indeed, perhaps your high moral standards and code of ethics will show them the error in their ways.


Helena: [Looks coldly at the rest of the room] Yes. But who will show the rest of you the error of your ways?

[Exit HELENA.]

Gertrude: [Looking very excited] Quickly! There's no time to lose! [Thinks] Actually, there's plenty, but you need to climb out the window and go to the old well. Charlie, you know where it is.

Alice: Okay! [Starts climbing out the window, but stops] Hey! Wait a minute! Why?


0A> [Exit HELENA.] =0A>=0A>Gertrude: [Looking very excited] Quickly! There's no time to lose!=0A> [Thinks] Actually, there's plenty, but yo= u need to climb out the=0A>window and go to the old well. Charlie, you knowwhere it is.=0A>=0A>Alice: Okay! [Starts climbing out the window, but stop= s] Hey! Wait a=0A>minute! Why?=0A>=0A=0A [a strange sense of anticipation inthe air - does nothing] =0A=0A;;; thanks of the welcome - I'll be joining i= n tomorrow hopefully.


Clint: When an old woman tells you to climb out a window, Bimbo, you climb out a window!

;;; Also, heya, Jack!


Charlie: [Gamely heads for the window] Oh, how thrilling! It's like those nights I snuck out to study all night in the library when Mother thought I was sleeping! [To the party] Come along, group!


Clint: [Following Charlie.] So what's with the old well, Sarge?


Austin : [To Alice, smirking] We are going to hide from Helena.


Gertrude: It's not the well, per se, it's what has to happen there!


Clint: And that would be...


Austin : And what might that be?


Gertrude: In the base of that well you'll find a rock that has no earthly business in an Apraxian hayfield. A piece of black volcanic glass. You'll find something buried under it I need you to look at.


Charlie: [Excited] How marvelous! We shall go at once. [Hesitates] Will it be obvious to us, what it does? Or what to do with it?


Clint: Haw! Let's go and find out! [Leads the way.]


Gertrude: Now, you'll meet a man there by the name of Mac. He will be somewhat surprised and suspicious of you, but tell him that you know he has a mis-spelled tattoo on his arm. [Spells it out] Jeniffer.

Alice: That's not mis-spelled!

[Exit the party, just before HELENA returns.]

Helena: Where are they?

Gertrude: Out the window.

Helena: How very rude! The one in the carriage is finished fornicating with Pinky. I must say, it was all very grotesque. He enormous [shudders] member, just standing upright. I quite didn't know what to do.

Gertrude: Step aside, dear. This is a job for Mama!

;;; End of scene, next one coming right up!


[Book IX, Act II, Scene XII. The Well. ALICE, AUSTIN, CHARLIE, CLINT, DUR and JORDAN are here. The well is high up above the manor and there is a good view of Harbridge College and Apraxia.]

Alice: Well?


Charlie: [Pats Alice on the head] Indeed, it is! But where is this [finger quotes] Mac character?


Clint: That's what it looks like to me! [Looks around for the rock.]


Alice: [Shrugs] Idunno.

[CLINT quickly locates the rock, which does appear to stand out, although it has been there for years.]


Clint: Haw! And now we just need to look under it... Doc, there's buried treasure. It could be [enticingly] food! Want to start digging?


Austin : [To Clint] That might work [Watches Dur to see if he starts digging]


Alice: Maybe it's the rock itself?


Austin : Could be, but Gertrude did say it was buried under the rock. Not really my area of expertise.


Dur: Food, you say? [Scratches around for a few seconds, before looking up happily] You're right! Under this orb [tosses the orb into the air] there's a bunch of delicious looking things with lots of legs!

;;; First to say it gets to grab the orb!


Charlie: Oh! That must be it! [Lunges awkwardly for the orb]


[CHARLIE catches the orb, and the party are immediately enveloped in light.]

;;; End of Book IX, Act II. Next one coming right up!