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Chapter 3: Complications

Chapter 3: Complications

After an hour had passed, the Lurker went back to the SubTerra Forum.

"I'm back," he said.

"And I'm done," Zephyr Tempest said.

"Good. Now let me test it out. Would you mind handing me that package?" Dintiradan asked.

As Zephyr Tempest walked over to get the package, Dintiradan mouthed the words You know what to do to Wanderer and the Lurker.

"Here you are." Zephyr Tempest handed the package to Dintiradan. Dintiradan picked up the package and ripped the wrapping off it.

Zephyr Tempest felt a chill run down his spine as a copy of Homeland fell out. "Why do you have that? What are you going to do with it?" he asked.

Dintiradan picked Homeland up and took a step towards the machinery. "You'll see."

"You can't! I'll stop you!" Zephyr Tempest yelled. Unfortunately, he failed to notice the Lurker sneaking up on him with a wrench. At least, not until the Lurker sneezed.


Zephyr Tempest whirled around. "Ice lan..."

Dintiradan managed to hit Zephyr Tempest over the head with Homeland. Zephyr Tempest fell to the ground.

"Not quite like I'd planned it, but it worked. Now tie him up," Dintiradan said.

The Lurker knelt down and felt for a pulse. "But Dintiradan, he's dead."

"Dead? But I didn't hit him that hard! Rats. I wanted to keep him alive in case the machinery needs adjusting later on. But I suppose it's safer this way, as there's no risk of him escaping now. Besides, there are other mages I can trick into helping me if necessary. Now hide the body."

"Where?" Wanderer asked.

"Anywhere where it won't be found!" Dintiradan said.

As Wanderer and the Lurker dragged the body out of sight, Dintiradan looked at the copy of Homeland in his hand. "I guess this really is evil. If I would have known that I could kill people with it directly, I wouldn't have bothered with the whole summoning bit. Oh well. Since I've put so much effort into it already, I'll do it anyway and keep hitting people over the head as plan B. Now, to summon a snake."

Dintiradan turned on the machine and glanced at a small display. Insert game, it read. Dintiradan slid Homeland into the slot. Choose creature to summon. Dintiradan carefully typed in the word snake. Select number of creatures to summon. Dintiradan punched in one. You have asked for one snake. Is that correct? Dintiradan typed in yes. Processing... please wait. Processing... please wait.

There was a small ding and large purplish snake fell out a compartment. Your order has been filled. Thank you and have a nice day!

The snake hissed at Dintiradan. Then it curled up and didn't move.

"What's wrong with it? Why isn't it attacking?" Dintiradan demanded.

"S... snakes are c... cold-bl... blooded creatures. It's p... probably t... too cold for it." The Lurker was shivering again.

"But if we could get it somewhere warm--like the General Forum--it would attack everything in sight, right?" Dintiradan asked.

"I th... think so."

"So all we have to do is figure out how to get a massive number of snakes from here to the General Forum. Hmm." Dintiradan paced the length of the forum. "I know... we'll put them on small planes and launch them into the Gen... nah, that's a stupid idea." Dintiradan paced some more. "There's plenty of spam, though. We'll light fires in each forum. The one here will be very small, just enough to get the snakes moving. The one in the Richard White Games Forum will be a bit larger, so that it will still be burning when the one in this forum goes out. The snakes will all migrate to that forum to stay warm. We'll do that for every forum until the snakes reach the General Forum. Then they'll attack, and in the confusion, we'll be able to take over the boards. It's that simple."

"That sounds like a lot of work," Wanderer said.

"Being this evil is not for the lazy," Dintiradan said, "It takes hard work!"

"But it's so far for the snakes to travel. All it takes is one fire to go out too soon, and our whole plan is messed up," Wanderer said.

"Hmm. Well, I suppose we could move the machine to the ruins of that mountain city in the Blades of Avernum Forum. That would shorten the distance down a lot. Let's do that." Dintiradan removed Homeland from the machine and turned it off. Then he began to disassemble the machine into manageable pieces.

"That sounds good ex... except f... for one l... little thing. H... how are we g... going to k... keep the snakes from attacking us?" the Lurker asked.

"Shoot. I knew I was forgetting something," Dintiradan said, "Well, we'll just move this and then go back to the General Forum to gather spam. By then, should I think up a way to protect ourselves."