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Chapter 28: Ocean Bound

Chapter 28: Ocean Bound

The water had filled up the entire SubTerra Forum. Now it began to slosh into the Richard White Games Forum. A red rat scouting the Nethergate Forum for anything interesting saw it begin to leak into that forum as well. It closed the door and ran off to tell Attorosi.


Ephesos joined Nioca and Fatman in the Announcements Forum. He pointed to Fatman. "What's he doing here?"

"Nioca is a lousy cleric. He refuses to heal me. See?" Fatman pointed to the small scratch on his arm.

"I'm not wasting any spell energy on that either. Get out of here," Ephesos said.

"All right, fine. But remember it's not my fault when this injury prevents me from slaying a rat coming after you." Fatman slouched off.

Riibu still lurked in the Tech Support Forum. Dikiyoba finished making the energy potions. "Dikiyoba thinks Riibu should come help out."

"Absolutely not!"

Dikiyoba shrugged and entered the Announcements Forum. Dikiyoba handed one energy potion each to Ephesos and Nioca. "Who should Dikiyoba give the third potion to?"

"Probably Zephyr," Ephesos said.

Dikiyoba exited into the Geneforge 4: Rebellion Forum. A moment later, Nikki entered with the Mystic's pack still above his head and the Mystic at his heels.

"Come on, give it back!" the Mystic snapped.

"There might be something useful to you in here. Catch!" Nikki threw the bag to Ephesos. Then he blocked the passage so that the Mystic couldn't get by.

"That's my stuff!" the Mystic protested as Ephesos dumped the bag out and started sorting through all the junk. Most of it was coins, crystals, gems, bars of metal, and jewelry. However, Ephesos sorted out two madness gems, several wands, and a balm of life potion.

"Oh good." Ephesos tucked the potion into his robes. He packed everything else but the wands and madness gems back up.

Nikki let the Mystic by. The Mystic snatched the pack up. "You've ruined my collection. I hope you're happy."

"Oh, I am." Nikki pulled out his stationary and searched for a pencil. "Wait... where is it? I've lost my pencil! How can I write poetry without it? I guess I'll just take distribute these instead." Nikki took the wands and gems and left.

Stareye entered from the Geneforge 4: Rebellion Forum. "Has Drakefyre come out yet?"

"Not that I know of," Nioca said.

"What's he been up to this whole time?" Stareye started to open the door.


In the Moderator Board, Emperor Tullegolar checked the last book on the bookshelf. "Okay, so Garrison hid it somewhere else. Where would he have hidden it? In the summoning machine?" Emperor Tullegolar checked everywhere around it. "Not there. Where else?" Emperor Tullegolar caught sight of a small lump under the quilt. He yanked the quilt off of it and snatched the book triumphantly. "Ahahaha! Finally."

Using the dictionary, he found the command to delete an account. "Here we go. Except I don't want to delete Imban. Well, I do eventually. But I want to delete other people first." Emperor Tullegolar hit a few more buttons, but the display still remained set on Imban.

The doorknob turned slightly. Emperor Tullegolar quickly ducked behind the administrator panel. The door didn't open. Emperor Tullegolar got up and hid beside the door. "That was close. I don't know why they changed their mind, but I'll get them when they come back."


It turns out that Arancaytar's arrival had distracted Stareye. "I'm back. Where's Drakefyre?"

"That's what I'm about to find out. If..."

Schrodinger entered. "I have the location of the summoning machine."

"Good. The two of you should select the people you think will be best suited to destroy the machine. I'll be back shortly to cause a distraction that will give you enough time to slip past the rats." Stareye opened the door and stepped inside the Moderator Board. He closed the door and started to look around. The Moderator Board was in complete disarray. "Drakef...?"

Wham! Emperor Tullegolar slammed the handle of his slith spear against Stareye's head. Stareye fell over unconscious.

Emperor Tullegolar smiled. "Ha! This time, you lose."


Meanwhile, the fluffy turtles caused devastation among the rats and the Spiderwebbers easily dealt with any rats that got past them. The white rat retreated to where the three giant rats stood now that the fear affect had worn off.

"What are you doing?" the white rat snapped.

"We're thinking up a new strategy. In case you haven't noticed, we're losing against those fluffy turtle things," one of the giant rats said, "Only a few rats have been able to get through."

"Yes... and they've all been mung rats! They must not taste good or something," another of the giant rats said.

"I don't blame them," said the third giant rat.

"Then bring the mung rats up front and have the others retreat a little," the first giant rat said.

"Right!" The second and third giant rats scampered off. "Mung rats up front, all others fall back! Mung rats up front, all others..."

"That won't be enough," the white rat said.

The first giant rat stared at the white rat. "You... you know magic."

"Of course. Your point?"

"The humans don't have many magic users. They have a few, but not as many as we do."

"In case you haven't noticed, my firebolt hasn't been very successful so far."

"I'm not talking about your firebolt. I'm talking about your ability to haste, bless, and shield other rats. There are plenty of white rats, if Freedom for Rats would just send them out here."

"But the other white rats are working with Freedom for Rats to..."

"I don't care what they're working on. We need them out here. Hey, you. Run back to Freedom for Rats and tell it that we're losing and we need the white rats here now."

The red rat nodded and ran off.


A group of Spiderwebbers watched the rats begin to retreat.

"We're beating them!" Andraste said.

"Not all of them," Slartucker said, "The mung rats aren't retreating. The rats are planning something."

Arancaytar joined the group. "Who wants to go destroy the summoning machine?"

"I will," Thuryl said.

"That depends. Will you being going?" Nikki asked.

"Uh..." Arancaytar walked away quickly.

"Hey! Wait up!"

Schrodinger paused near the fountain. "Alorael, do you..." Schrodinger noticed that Alorael wasn't sniping. " you feel alright?"

Alorael set his sniper rifle and bottle of skribbane down. "No, I don't. I feel sick. I..." Alorael was interrupted by a horrible coughing spasm.

"I'll get Ephesos!" The Stew Boy ran off. A short time later, Ephesos and Nioca pushed their way through the crowd of curious Spiderwebbers.

"What's the matter?" Ephesos asked.

Alorael started to reply but ended up coughing instead. Ephesos cast a curing spell, but Alorael continued to cough.

"It's not working," Nioca said.

"I noticed that," Ephesos snapped.


Synergy and Randomizer appeared back in the General Forum.

"Zeviz, did you... oh no." Randomizer groaned as he caught sight of Zorro's body and the broken Galactic Core.

"It looks like the wererat was ready before we were," Synergy said.

Zorro stirred and sat up.

"You weren't dead?" Randomizer asked.

"I was dead but then Icshi retroactively changed it so I never died."

Randomizer looked around in confusion, but Synergy just shook his head.

"Where's Zeviz?" he asked.

"I don't know. He probably left after attacking me," Zorro said.

"Wait, the wererat was Zeviz? But that means that nothing we learned about the wererat or the location of the summoning machine got through," Randomizer said.

"Right before I got killed, Schrodinger left with the supposed location of the summoning machine."

"The wererat wouldn't have given out the right location. Come on, Synergy, we have to stop the wererat and prevent anyone being sent out to destroy the summoning machine with the wrong information."

"Hold on a moment," Synergy said, "Zorro, why didn't Icshi restore Galactic Core as well?"

"He said I should take up Ocean Bound instead. I don't know what he meant by that."


Zeviz entered the Tech Support Forum and began looking through the equipment, which was now very disorganized from everyone searching through it.

"What are you looking for?" Riibu asked.

"Oh, uh, Zorro wanted me to check on the other copies of Galactic Core."

"I see," Riibu said.

"Aha! Here are two copies." Zeviz quickly pocketed them. "But where is the third?"

A nymph named Debris Discoverer edged towards Zeviz curiously and then scuttled away hurriedly. "Mom! Dad! He smells like those... those..."

Garbage Gatherer waved her antennae. "Wererat!"

"What?" Riibu asked.

Zeviz backed away from the GIFTRs and toward the Announcements Forum. Filth Finder and Garbage Gatherer charged him as Randomizer and Synergy entered.

"Zeviz!" Randomizer yelled.

Zeviz pulled Riibu in front of him and held the assassin's blade against her throat.

"No! What are you doing?" Riibu exclaimed.

The GIFTRs halted, unsure of what to do. Zeviz continued backing towards the Announcements Forum, using Riibu as a shield.

Randomizer raised his hands into spell-casting position. "I'll just spray acid them both."

"No! I don't want to die!" Riibu said.

Synergy stepped in front of Randomizer. "You can't do that!"

"And why not?"

Meanwhile, Zeviz was almost out of the forum.

"He's getting away!" Filth Finder started towards Zeviz again. Zeviz shoved Riibu away. She stumbled over Filth Finder. Zeviz made it to the Announcements Forum, slammed the door, and ran for the Geneforge 4: Rebellion Forum.

"What are you doing?" the Mystic asked.

"Out of my way!" Zeviz kicked the pack over, spilling its contents everywhere.

"Not again!" The Mystic scurried around gathering everything back up.


In the General Forum, Zorro sat muttering to himself. "Ocean Bound. Ocean Bound. What did Icshi mean by that?" Finally, Zorro got up and entered the Tech Support Forum. He grabbed a copy of Ocean Bound and returned to the General Forum. He started a game. "I suppose I'll find out."