8FOLD: Mighty Medley # 33, October 2016, by Messrs. Brenton, McClure, Perron, Russell, and Stokes

Drew Perron pwerdna at gmail.com
Sun Oct 2 16:03:58 PDT 2016

On 10/2/2016 9:20 AM, Tom Russell wrote:
> Elaine lies down on her bed and closes her eyes as Antinea presses the
> snow-white jewel into her forehead, the transmitter that will send her
> to the other world.

She did seems like a bit of a Pearl.

> A sense of warmth, of peace, of bone-deep
> tiredness washes over her. She is floating up, up, through a calm
> ocean, free of cares. She opens her eyes, and sees herself floating
> slowly up toward the ceiling. Can it be?--she looks down and sees her
> own body beneath her.

ahhh, lovely~

> Somewhere in the
> shadow there is a tower, and she shudders remembering the old and
> awful story of that tower and what the Seven Wonders had found there--

ohhhhhh ~.~

>    The stars rush toward her at firework speed; her soul is yanked
> through interstellar space. She has no stomach but she must barf.


> There are flashes of ships moving in and out of hyperspace; lone
> supergods traveling alone like her; interstellar lifeforms that float
> like jellyfish through the dark.

ahhhhhhhh ~.~

> And then--
>    There is the Kuiper Belt again, and Neptune, and all the worlds
> that were-- but different. Before her lies the Earth and then beyond
> that Venus, bright and shining and beautiful--she does not look
> forward to what she will see in its place when she returns.

ohhhhh. *Really* good use of that

> She
> hurtles down to the Earth, passing the moon in sunshine and in shadow,
> toward continents that are similar but not the same as hers, down past
> airships flying through the air surrounded by an aura of blue light,
> and are those *dragons*?--and down to an island where lies a bright
> brass city of Art Deco metal and stone, and through the buildings, her
> soul rushes down, down, and--

augh, this is all so lovely ~.~

> On a world far removed from the Earth, there was an old man sitting in
> the dirt. He was contemplating new types of beetles. And occasionally
> hideous and unspeakable revenge.

X3 That's a great opening.

>    He looked out beyond the edge of the plant growth. Its perimeter
> was only a few tens of metres away, and beyond that the landscape was
> still a blasted and near desolate landscape dominated by dust red
> earth and occasional scrabbles of blackened vegetation.

Terraforming the hard way!

>    Despite the lack of response he began to lecture them. "You seemed
> to think that just because I don't use my magics to seek power over
> others or blast them with balls of fire that I couldn't do so if I
> wanted to. It's a matter of choice, not inability."

There's a lot of your characters who speak in this way/make this kind of point. :o

> There was a time
> when this sort of information was common knowledge. Back before the
> warlocks started drawing on the lifeforce of the environment to power
> their own magics. Back before the biosphere was brought to the point
> of collapse, and civilisation fell into barbarism.

Ahhhhh, gotcha.

>    The old wizard leaned forward on his staff, a satisfied grin on his
> face. "And I have some really interesting ideas for new types of
> beetles that I want to try out on you three."

Another thoughtful extrapolation of fantasy mechanics. :>

> The barrier's
> destruction hadn't immediately drawn anyone's attention, so his
> footfalls likely wouldn't do any further harm; and for some reason he
> felt in need of haste, or perhaps more accurately he /wanted/ to be a
> little bolder.

Enabling people is so nice. <3

>    -The sun is... the wrong color?-
>    'Indeed.'
>    The Library kept silent for a moment, then: -It seems our Empress
> is unlocking the secrets of this world as we are traversing it.-

That's a nice subtle (?) way to indicate Deep Magic.

> The sun was the one truly static
> feature here - the world itself could be dug up and scarred and then
> regenerated by the Wellspring, but that massive black orb was out of
> reach of anyone and anything. Except it wasn't, not any longer.
>    -Do not fear,- the Library whispered softly.

*siiiiiiigh~* Powerful.

> --------------SEVEN 'GAINST THEBES------------------
> ---------------------Finale-------------------------


>    Gulliver watched Peake, standing and burning and laughing. "Well,"
> said Gulliver, absolutely gob-smacked, "that's unnerving."

*pfffft* XD;;;

> Suddenly the whole structure was
> erupting in flames, and just as suddenly, Peake came out the other end
> of the building. He was no longer afire, but his face were a terrible,
> blistering mess, and his clothes reduced to blackened rags.

Ah. I see. :o

>    Peake landed next to the split-rail fence. He gathered himself back
> up, and gave Hank a bloody smirk. "You hit pretty good for a woman.
> I'll give you that."
>    "I'm more of a man than you ever were," said Hank.
>    "I know what you're doing," said Peake. "Trying to make me lose my temper!"

It's hilarious that you think that response is about you.

>    Someone called his name, and threw something toward him. The
> something caught his eye. He recognized the beat-up little ball of
> metal, and it made him stop for an instant, and remember the words
> Dash Adams said to him. In that instant, his body became solid, no
> long passing through the fence but merging with it, his heart impaled
> upon the wood. He was dead before the ball of metal landed in the
> dirt.
>    "Pa! Pa!" said the boy, coming up to his father. "Are you alright?"
>    Silke grimaced and held his blood-soaked hands over his ribs.
> "Might be I need to see the doctor," said Silke. "I ain't concerned.
> He appears to have done wonders for Hank. What was that, that you
> threw at him?"
>    "That was the bullet that killed Jack Peake."

ohhhhhh. NICE. :D :D :D

> So neither Silke nor Skin
> of Snake ever spoke a word to each other the whole time they shared
> the room, and yet both seemed very glad of the other's company.


> Three-Nine's mechanical horse seemed awfully sorrowful, but was
> comforted by the boy; and this, friends, is how Righteous Silke (for
> this is when Silke's boy started using that name) came to have his
> famous mechanical horse.

ohhhhhh. :o Fascinating.

> It seems like I been telling this tale for a good long while, seems
> almost like I've been talking for the better part of three years.


>    But it was the last time the boy ever took a life. After Mr. Adams,
> and to a lesser extent Mr. Peake, he never shot to kill, only to
> wound, and only then to save the lives of others. His father noticed
> the change, and it gladdened his bitter heart; he was proud of the
> boy, and even though Silke never told him that, the boy knew it.

awwwwwwwww. Good. <3

>    Now, the boy never swore a holy oath, or told his father that he
> wouldn't take another life, or how he felt about Dash Adams, and Jack
> Peake, and poor Mad Hattie, and how that all changed how he felt about
> killing.

:> A satisfying ending.

Drew "ahhhhhh lovely" Perron

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